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Eco-photos of the week: July 24-30

horses swim across river in Chincoteague Pony Swim

Photo: The Washington Post/Getty Images:

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Chincoteague Pony Swim

Wild ponies swim across the Assateague Channel during the annual Chincoteague Pony Swim in Virginia on July 27. Said to be the descendants of Spanish horses that swam ashore after a shipwreck, the ponies draw large crowds to the area each year. During the Pony Penning, the horses swim across the channel from Assateague Island to Chincoteague Island at slack tide when there's no current and swimming is easiest. The first pony that reaches shore is dubbed King or Queen Neptune and given away to a lucky ticketholder at the next day's auctions.