Illinois DNR: No, there aren’t sharks in the Illinois River

By Benjamin Yount 
Illinois News Network

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is assuring folks across the state that there are no sharks in the Illinois River.

Despite what your Facebook feed says, Illinois Department of Natural Resources spokesman Ed Cross said there are no bull sharks swimming in the Illinois River near Morris.

The story about sharks in Illinois got its start on a parody website,

Cross said in the age of social media, even a parody website looks real enough.

“The websites look real, but the information shared there is simply fabricated,” Cross said. “It simply isn’t true.”

Cross said the Illinois Department of Natural Resources website,, is real. He added that if there were sharks in Illinois, that’d be first place you would hear about it.

“If you don’t see anything from us concerning a shark in a lagoon in Orland Park or in a pond in Sangamon County, there’s no need to hit the panic button yet,” Cross said.

Illinois is not alone is having to refute the shark story. Conservation officials in Indiana and Kentucky also had to issue official statements this week that they are shark free as well.

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