Ted Richards is so obsessed with his pet parrots Ellie, Teaka, Timneh, Jake and Bubi that he’s had his face tattooed with their colourful feathers. The 56-year-old former factory worker who already has 110 tattoos, went further by removing his ears in an extreme act of mutilation made famous by artist Van Gough. Ted gave his severed ears to a mate who he believes “will appreciate them”.
He is also looking for a surgeon to give his nose a beak.
“I think it looks really great. I love it. It’s the best thing that has happened to me.I am so happy it’s unreal, I can’t stop looking in the mirror. I’ve done it because I want to look like my parrots as much as possible. I’ve had my hair long for so many years my ears have been covered up. I have to admit I did used to get teased at school about my ears but that not the reason I’ve had it done.”
Ted got his first tattoo in 1976 and has since built up a collection covering almost his entire body. He also has a peace sign branded on his left shoulder with a 750 degrees centigrade hot iron and two magnets implanted in his hands. He shares his home in Hartcliffe, Bristol with his four parrots, as well as South American green iguana Iggy, and pitbull terrier Candy.
He scours the internet looking for new procedures and says his facial transformation is a tribute to his “babies” – Ellie, a green winged macaw, and Teaka, a harlequin macaw. He is keeping tight-lipped about who carried out the six hour operation, but insists he is “happier than ever,” and has even now got himself a girlfriend, Suzannah, 31. Since undergoing the operation Ted says the only issue he has is keeping his glasses in place – so he has had two small metal pins added to the side of his head.