Britain's wackiest taxidermist has come up with his first ever Christmas range - full of festive stuffed animal decorations.Eccentric Jack Devaney, 25, has spent 18 months building up a catalogue of usual creations that already include a rabbit toaster, a rat pencil case, and magnetic mice.Although he has built up a large following of customers across the world he said he never expected his items to become festive family favourites.
But he claims demand for his seasonal-inspired taxidermy has been huge.Among the best-selling items destined to be hung on family trees throughout December have been his rat's head bauble and a shooting star, made from a real starfish.He has also produced hamster danglers, a Homunculus man with legs made from rat and mice tails, ham balls made from hamsters and butterfly tree decorations - all with a festive feel.And taking pride of place on top of the tree is a teddy bear head with five rat tails hanging off.
Jack, of Plymouth, Devon, said: "This is the first year I have done a Christmas range.
I did just the gingerbread men with mouse hearts last year but have got a full set now and a variety of items. "Honestly, I did not think anyone would want this and did not think it would be something people would want to share with their family at Christmas.
"But how wrong I was and they have been flying out the door.
They have been more popular than I ever dreamed."A lot of my customers before would buy something and then hide it away as it is an odd thing to own and they might be embarrassed by it.
"But I never anticipated people would want to show it off and put them on the Christmas tree to enjoy with their children.
That is a bit mental, but in a good way."Jack said his rat's head bauble and his shooting star, made with a gun-tooting Starfish, have been his best sellers.He added: "It is something different for Christmas."I don't know anywhere else you can get a rat's head for a Christmas tree." Jack said he has been working for around 18 months full time running his business, the World Around Ewe, since he developed the niche while completing a 3D design course at university.He said he "misunderstood" the brief of a project and designed a pencil case made out of a dead rat to showcase skills he had previously learned as a butcher.But while the idea didn't go down well with university bosses it did spark interest from around the world - and has led to a successful business.He added: "I showed off how I used to be a butcher and created the pencil case.
"On a personal level the lecturers at the uni were supportive but the university itself didn't like it.
"I misunderstood the brief but I have got a full time business out of it.
I have just winged it ever since and don't really have a plan, but it seems to be doing ok at the moment."The most successful items I have ever sold have been the magnetic mouse earring but it is hard to name the weirdest.
They are all pretty strange to be honest."I try to make stuff that makes me and other people laugh out loud.
That's all I really want to do."Throughout the year the reaction has been generally positive.
Every couple of months someone will start spreading lies about me and I have had death threats.
They wrongly think I have killed the animals myself."People who are aware of what I do think they are great.
Some people think I am mental and others think it is cruel.
But there is no cruelty at all as I buy everything already frozen.
"There are two sides though - you either really like it or not into it at all."