A seven-year-old boy has been attacked by a goanna while camping with his friends and family in the Basin campground in Sydney's north over the weekend.
His father, Brett Hawkins, spoke to 9news.com.au about the attack in a bid to get parents to educate their children about the dangers of approaching Australian wildlife and just how severe the consequences can be.
Brett told reporters his son, seven-year-old Jimmy Hawkins, and his friends surrounded the monitor lizard which was almost three feet long - and Jimmy got a little too close.
The monitor lizard bit Jimmy's foot, puncturing his toes and inducing tendon damage.
A man who witnessed the incident take place kicked the attacking reptile fiercely to get it to detach from Jimmy's foot.
Jimmy also spoke to 9news.com.au bravely admitting his genuine fear as the lizard took hold of his little foot, "it was trying to drag me … It was really scary."
All visitors receive a warning before entering the Basin Campground Jimmy revealed that park rangers had told him of the risks of approaching wildlife. Still, it was apparently not enough.
Doctors told Jimmy and his family the accident could have been much worse, and that this time the seven-year-old was "lucky".
Experts say the key to staying safe from goannas is keeping your distance from the creatures, and making sure your children are aware of how important it is to stay clear and respect our natural wildlife.