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Boy bitten by gator talks about how he survived the attack

ORLANDO, Fla. – We’re hearing from a 9-year-old boy who survived a gator attack in St. Cloud, Fla.

James Barney told news crews how he fought off the alligator after it bit him in a lake Thursday.

Barney is still recovering from surgery, but was able to hold a news conference from his hospital bed.

He told reporters he jumped in the lake to cool off, felt a tug, thought one of his friends was messing with him, then realized he was fighting an alligator.

“I felt it’s jaw, I felt his teeth…I didn’t know what to do so I immediately reacted and hit it a couple of times so then it was letting go and finally I had enough strength left to pry it’s jaw open a little,” said Barney.

Doctors found an alligator tooth in his back.

Wildlife investigators want to use that tooth to make sure they have the right gator when it’s caught.