Herpetophobia sufferers, beware. Officials in Chicago revealed this week that there is a four- to five-foot long alligator lurking about in a lagoon located in Humboldt Park, a popular green area in the city's West Side.
The reptile is between 4 and 5 feet long, specialists said, according to Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi.
Police said they are still investigating.More news: Khawaja ruled out of WC with hamstring injury
With gators being a non-native species to the Chicago area, some locals have speculated that the scaly creature was once a pet, and was dumped into the lagoon by an individual who either grew exhausted of the reptile or was simply unable to continue caring for it.
An alligator has taken up residence in a Chicago lagoon, surprising locals after a winter of polar temperatures in the third-largest USA city.
It "will probably be scared and try to hide", she added.
Crowley says the animal is believed to be an American alligator. "He pops up, we see him, and then he sinks down". "He's gonna be looking for a better place to sleep".More news: Ekta's Balaji Telefilms apologises on Kangana's behalf
Strangely enough, this isn't the first alligator to grace Chicago waters.
City officials say alligator traps are being placed around the lagoon in hopes the animal will swim into one and be safely removed. And back in 2011, two gators were found swimming in the Chicago River within the same month, with one measuring 3-feet-long and a smaller alligator discovered a few weeks prior, FOX 32 reports. But police are asking people to stay out of the water.
Bait traps have since been set up in the lagoon to capture the alligator, the Chicago Tribune reports. Police said at the time that the animals were likely pets that had been released.
The investigation into the alligator's whereabouts and who potentially released him into the lagoon are still ongoing, according to authorities.More news: Mexican finance chief abruptly resigns, sending peso tumbling