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Christmas comes early for Bristol Zoo's gorillas

Bristol Zoo’s six gorillas have received their own stockings, full of their favourite vegetables, to celebrate the festive season.

Potatoes and apples for this youngster. Credit: Bristol Zoo

"As well as being a form of enrichment for our gorillas, to stimulate their naturally inquisitive and playful behaviour, each one of the six stockings represents a 10% decline in western lowland gorilla numbers in the wild in the last 20 years, equating to a devastating 60% in the last two decades."

– Lynsey Bugg, Assistant Curator of Mammals at Bristol Zoo
The male silverback got involved too. Credit: Bristol Zoo

Whilst the Zoo’s gorillas may be enjoying treats this Christmas, their critically endangered cousins in Cameroon are increasingly facing threats.

Western lowland gorillas are being hunted at a rapid rate. This critically endangered animal is a victim of sustenance hunting in Cameroon.

The species is critically endangered in the wild. Credit: Bristol Zoo

"We have a long term commitment to conserve this species. We are working with local communities in Cameroon to engage them in putting less pressure on the western lowland gorilla population, either through alternative farming practices or rewarding those who expose gorilla hunters.”

– Christoph Schwitzer, Director of Conservation for the Bristol Zoological Society

Christmas getaway begins in Bristol

Bristol Airport is expecting one of its busiest-ever weekends Credit: PA

The big Christmas getaway has started as schools break up and people head off for the festive break.

Bristol Airport is expecting one of its busiest-ever weekends. Twenty thousand passengers will be flying into and out of the terminal on Sunday alone.

On the roads, the AA says Christmas shopping means congestion is likely around Cribbs Causeway. But there's some good news for motorists. The Highways Agency says it's suspending some motorway roadworks.

House prices in Bristol rising at faster rate than London

Houses in Bristol are now worth an average of £218,600 Credit: ITV News

House prices in Bristol have grown at a faster rate than those in London in recent months, property analyst Hometrack has reported.

London property prices increased by 0.5% in the three months to November.

But property values in Bristol recorded a 0.6% uplift for the same period.

Homes in Bristol are now worth £218,600 typically, having become £26,600 more expensive over the last year.

Stranger danger cases in Bristol and South Glos are not a "linked series of attempted abductions"

Police investigating a number of suspicious incidents involving men approaching children outside schools in Bristol and South Gloucestershire say they don't believe they are "a series of linked attempted abductions."

Avon and Somerset Police have now investigated most of the incidents that were reported. In some cases they turned out to be simply inappropriate and abusive comments, incidents not involving children or, in other cases, not an incident at all.

"While we understand any incident involving stranger danger are worrying for parents, these reports do not involve any attempted abductions."

– Avon & Somerset Police

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Shaun the Sheep comes to life in Bristol

Shaun was voted the nation's favourite children's TV character this year. Credit: Aardman

Fans of Shaun the Sheep can watch sculptures of the Aardman Animations character come to life from today.

Ahead of an art trail in Bristol next summer, a unit at the Galleries Shopping Centre in the city centre is being used as a studio.

Local artists will be transforming the blank sheep canvasses into works of art.

12-year-old boy missing in Bristol

Mohammed Khadar-Hashi. Credit: Avon & Somerset Police

Police are appealing for help to find a 12-year-old boy from Bristol who has been missing since Wednesday night.

Mohammed Khadar-Hashi was last seen near Easton Way in the city at 8pm on Wednesday.

He told family members that he was going home but has not been seen since.

Mohammed is about 4ft 11ins, slim with shaved black hair. He was wearing a green puffa-style jacket with multi coloured stripes, grey-green tracksuit bottoms and black shoes.

Anyone with information should contact Bristol CID, quoting reference MP 3090/14.

VIDEO: panto stars Ashley, Pudsey and Andy Ford

Ashley and Pudsey are starring in panto in Bristol. They'll be in Dick Whittington at the Bristol Hippodrome - and they've had rave reviews for their performances as Alice Fitzwarren and her faithful pooch.

Another star of the show is a veteran of Bristol panto - comedian Andy Ford.
We met all three when they came into our studio today. You can watch the whole interview here.

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