I’m passionate about this beautiful river. Standing on its banks I feel I’m at the edge of the Earth. It’s funny to think back on my first sight of the Danube. I wasn’t impressed.
As a student in Bulgaria I loved bird-watching, and I’d heard so much about the Danube, renowned for its birds of every colour and shape, like pelicans and sea eagles.
But when I first saw this fabled river, its surroundings were so built up and it seemed confined – it wasn’t the river of my dreams.
Now, since I’ve been working for WWF, spending time monitoring the Danube, I’ve got to know the true river. I explore its islands and constantly moving sandbars – areas that were unknown to science when I was a student.
The Danube is increasingly seen as little more than a route for transporting freight – but I’m standing up for the river I love, and the nature that depends on it.
Ivan Hristov (Freshwater Expert, WWF)
At least 2.7 billion people live in river basins that experience severe water shortages during at least one month of the year