Keepers at Bristol Zoo have a mammoth task on their hands at the moment, says the BBC: They have begun their annual stock-take of the animals kept at the zoo which is reckoned to cover over 14,000 creatures! The zoo and the Wild Place Project are home to around 500 species, from tiny fish and insects to gorillas and hippos.

The count is carried out at the start of each year to verify audit records and check vulnerable populations are thriving. A spokesperson for the zoo said: “The last 12 months have been very successful in terms of animal births, so the count is a big job this year.”

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Apparently we Brits are getting spicier! The Daily Star reports that sales of traditional sauces such as ketchup are being hit because more and more families now prefer something spicy with items such as Tabasco and chilli growing in popularity.

Heinz ketchup has lost £6.4million worth of sales in the past year, Colman's Mustard down £3.1m, and Branston Pickle sales are down £571,000, says market analysts Nielsen.

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If sales of Union Jack related items are anything to go by, then Brighton is Britain's most patriotic town, says the Daily Express. Its residents went all out to celebrate big events in 2016 such as the Queen's 90th birthday, the World Cup and Team GB at the Olympic Games. According to analysis by Amazon, sales of Union Jack and St George's flags, bunting, bowler hats, table cloths, cake toppers and pin badges were among the highest in the country.

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This may seem difficult to get your head around if you are from countries like Spain, France or Italy but The Guardian reports on the rise of English sparkling wine. Apparently it is now a major player in the global drinks market, with home-produced wines exported to a record 27 countries.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs says the number of countries receiving cases of British sparkling wine, which makes up nearly 70% of the UK’s total wine production, was up from 19 in 2015. Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom commented: “Thanks to sparkling rosé from Kent, and Chardonnay from Sussex, we are rightly taking our place among the world’s most renowned wine producers ... The number of countries enjoying our wine has increased by a third this year, and with major producers on track to deliver a tenfold increase in exports, we could soon be tapping into more countries.”

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Reference list:
The Express (www.express.co.uk)
The Guardian (www.guardian.co.uk)
Daily Star (www.daily star.co.uk)
BBC (www.bbc.co.uk)