A long-distance swimmer seeking to become the first British man to complete the Ocean's Seven, a group of seven long-distance swims around the world, was protected on his journey by a pod of dolphins who scared off a shark, according to the swimmer's support team.
Adam Walker was swimming the approximately 16-mile long Cook Strait off the New Zealand coast last Tuesday when he spotted a shark in the water below him. Just as his fears began to rise, Walker said he was surrounded by a pod of around 10 dolphins that swam with him for more than an hour.
"I'd like to think they were protecting me and guiding me home," Walker wrote on his Facebook page. "This swim will stay with me forever."
Video of Walker's swim with the dolphins was posted to YouTube the next day, April 23, where it has garnered nearly two million views since.
Walker finished the Cook Strait swim in eight hours and 36 minutes. He has already conquered the English Channel, Gibraltar Straits, Catalina Channel, Molokai Strait and Tsugaru Strait.
With the Cook Strait now under his swim cap, Walker has only the North Channel in the Irish Sea left to swim to complete the Ocean's Seven. He will take that on this August, according to his YouTube page, and, if successful, complete the Ocean's Seven.
In a fitting coincidence, given the animals he encountered in Cook Strait, Walker is swimming to raise money for the Whale and Dolphin Conservation, an organization that bills itself as "the leading global charity dedicated to the conservation and protection of whales and dolphins."