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Last Updated: Monday, 2 August, 2004, 16:57 GMT 17:57 UK
Shark victim 'saved by TV lesson'
A shark
Aaron Perez described his attacker as "big and ugly"
An 11-year-old boy has told how he fought off a shark with techniques he learned from the Discovery Channel.

Aaron Perez was bitten so badly that a surgeon at the Memorial Hermann Children's Hospital in Houston spent four hours re-attaching his arm.

But on Monday he appeared at a news conference in Texas, wearing a T-shirt with a picture of a shark open-mouthed.

The boy described how he punched his attacker in the gills after learning how to do it from the television.

"I was watching TV the day before and I saw that on the Discovery Channel," he said on Monday.

Father joins in

He described the shark as "big and ugly", adding: "He was bigger than my dad."

Aaron's father, Blas Perez, witnessed the attack at Bryan Beach in Brazoria County, on Texas' Gulf of Mexico coast.

He said his son was wading in a school of trout on 25 July when the shark struck.

"Aaron picked [a fish] up and he turned around to tell me, and when he did that the shark was right there and the dogfight was on," he told NBC's Today show.

Mr Perez and a friend weighed into the tussle and hit the animal with their fishing rods.

"I've never been that violent in my life," Mr Perez said.

Local fire chief John Stanford said the animal was a bull shark, which is aggressive and swims in shallow water.

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