What better way to celebrate the cuteness of our amazing feathered friends, than by honouring them with their very own special day?

World Penguin Day is celebrated on April 25 each year, corresponding roughly with the date when these fascinating creatures make their annual, northward migration.

People are encouraged to get involved with World Penguin Day by finding out more about protecting Antarctica’s marine environment through the Greenpeace website, or by raising awareness for the plight of the penguin by posting a cute penguin picture, or sending a penguin e-card to get people talking.

One person who knows penguins better than most is Anne Morris, one of the keepers at Chester Zoo charged with looking after their colony of about 50 Humboldt penguins which remain one of the attraction’s most popular animals.

“It’s all about the way they walk and that wobble,” laughs Anne, who has looked after the birds for more than 20 years. “They are smashing little animals and children love to see them because they are so inquisitive with their responses.”

The Humboldts, originally from the Pacific coast of South America, usually nest on islands and rocky coasts, burrowing holes in guano and sometimes using scrapes or caves.

“I wouldn’t say they are easy to look after but they are certainly a pleasure to look after,” says Anne. “They go around in a big colony together and get on well but it’s in breeding season when they pair off that you start to get problems.

“They can then get very aggressive and territorial and it’s very interesting to watch - some of them like our old boy Rud have been going for ever. He’s 26-years-old now and is a smashing little thing.”

Chester’s penguins are part of a European breeding programme and the colony has an excellent breeding record with many of the youngsters going on to join breeding groups in other zoos.

Historically, populations have been threatened due to over-exploitation of guano and currently, populations are declining due to limited food availability caused by overfishing and El Nino.

“Some people tend to forget that these cuddly little things are wild birds and where they live is under constant threat,” adds Anne.”

“They have a tough time so anything we can do to make people more aware of penguins is fantastic – seeing all the children watch them when they are sitting by the waterfall is fantastic. They all shout ‘jump!’ and cheer when they do.

“Seeing kids enjoy animals like that is what the zoo is all about.”

Today, between 2pm-3pm, Chester Zoo rangers will celebrate all things penguin at their habitat. Guests can discover a selection of fascinating penguin artefacts including real penguin eggs and feathers and you’ll also get the opportunity to ask any penguin questions you might have.