A drunken Australian man has somehow survived after riding a crocodile while intoxicated.

''They said he had chunks out of his legs and things like that.''

Michael Newman was fortunate to get away with his life in tact after scaling a fence and jumping on the 800kg saltwater croc, Fatso, who tore chunks of flesh off the 36-year-old man's leg before the injured guy staggered back to the pub he had been kicked out of earlier in the night.

Mark Phillips, manager of the public house, told the West Australian newspaper: ''They said he had chunks out of his legs and things like that.''

But according to Malcolm Douglas, owner of the park in Broome where Michael had straddled Fatso, his injuries could have been much worse.

He explained: ''If it had been warmer and Fatso was more alert, we would have been dealing with a fatality.''