Even on a grey, rainy day there's always something to make you smile at Strumpshaw Fen. The great crested grebes are my favourite today - stripey little chicks hitching a lift on mum's back and peeking out from under the warm feathers.
It's amazing to think that those chicks might not be here today, if it wasn't for a pioneering group of women who campaigned to protect birds from the feather trade back in the late 19th century. Great crested grebes were almost hunted to extinction to make fancy plumes for hats. It's thanks to the determination and compassion of these women that the RSPB was formed in 1889. We've come a long way in wildlife protection since then, but there are also many new threats. If you'd like to get involved in the RSPB's campaign work, click here for our campaigns pages.
Oh - if you're wondering where to see those stripey little chicks, you can see them right outside reception hide - but come soon, they grow up fast!