Man forces open crocodile's jaws off his head at Australian resort

A man has escaped with his life after being attacked by a saltwater crocodile while snorkelling at an exclusive Queensland resort in Australia.

Marcus McGowan, 51, has detailed how he managed to prise the predator's jaws off his head, suffering lacerations.

McGowan said he was in the water with a group of people when he was bitten from behind.

"I thought it was a shark but when I reached up, I realised it was a crocodile. I was able to lever its jaws open just far enough to get my head out," he said in a statement.

The crocodile - suspected to be a juvenile - came back for another go, he said, but he was able to push it away, suffering a bite to his hand.

McGowan was airlifted to a nearby island hospital and later flown to Cairns, Australia for further treatment.

Crocodile attacks are uncommon in Australia, but there have been several in recent months.

Queensland's environment department says it will investigate the incident, but "crocodiles in the open ocean can be difficult to locate as the animals often travel tens of kilometres per day".

Crocodiles are common in Australia's tropical north, which has seen a series of attacks recently.

In February, rangers shot a 4.2m (13.4ft) crocodile that attacked a man and ate his dog at a remote boat ramp north of Cairns.

And earlier this month, the remains of 65-year-old fisherman Kevin Darmody were found inside a 4.1m crocodile on the nearby Kennedy River - the 13th fatal attack in Queensland since record-keeping began in 1985.

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