Now, the bats in Ozzy Osbourne’s belfry can rest peacefully instead of risking resting in peace.
The former wildman of metal, whose past antics include decapitating a live bat onstage in 1982, has been forced to postpone plans to convert a barn on his Buckinghamshire, England estate at Stone Dean Farm in Jordans into a two-bedroom home because endangered species of bats and owls have moved in.
Before Osbourne can commence renovations he must take steps to provide sanctuary for the animals, which are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981 and the Conservation of Habitats Species Regulations of 2010. To complicate matters, the construction can only take place at certain times of the year to ensure the well-being of the bats and owls.
"Mr. Osbourne cannot convert his listed building until satisfactory surveys and related mitigation, allowing the bats and owls to remain living on the site," said a Chiltern District Council spokewoman in a statement.
For those unfamiliar with Osbourne's history of aggression towards winged creatures, here's a summary:
To celebrate the signing of his solo band, Osbourne brought a pair of doves to a 1981 meeting with CBS executives in Los Angeles, but instead of throwing them in the air to symbolize the correlation between peace and metal, Osbourne bit the head off one of the birds, then spat it back out as blood dribbled down his chin.
Soon after, at a January 20, 1982 concert at Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Des Moines, Iowa, Osbourne bit the head off a live bat. However, this time, the decapitation was actually an accident: Osbourne's "Diary of a Madman" set was decorated with rubber bats, and Ozzy thought the bat he sunk his teeth into was a fake one that had fallen from the set. In reality, someone from the crowd had tossed the creature; and when Osbourne bit into the neck, he heard a crunch. The mistake led to a series of painful rabies injections and the wrath of both the animal liberation community and anyone who attacked heavy metal as "the devil's music."