Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Tulsa-Based Skunk Whisperer Spots Success

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Tulsa-Based Skunk Whisperer Spots Success

Article excerpt

Ned Bruha operated a nuisance wildlife control service, catching and removing unwanted critters from attics and basements.

But his customers had another name for him.

"Clients nicknamed me 'The Skunk Whisperer,' and everybody encouraged us to change our business name to that," Bruha said.

After securing the name with a trademark, the business changed along with Bruha's image. Bruha offers homeowners and businesses total wildlife control in a humane way.

"Our philosophy is built around our belief that humane wildlife control methods are not only the kindest solution to nuisance wildlife problems but also the most effective, long-lasting and cost- efficient," Bruha said. He does not kill or relocate animals unless the animal is ill or injured or the law requires it.

"We used to trap and relocate troublesome wildlife from homes and businesses, point at the hole the animal made and told the property owner to hire somebody to fix it before it happened again," Bruha said. "The property owners typically did not repair the holes and we ended up going back the next week, month or year to trap more animals from their property."

Bruha specializes in removing the wildlife and keeping the animals out for good, without trapping them.

"Trapping is seldom the truly humane solution for wildlife issues," Bruha said.

Bruha and his wife, Betsy, moved to Oklahoma from Wisconsin in 1996. Fascinated with the different foliage and wildlife species here, Bruha immediately started getting out, enjoying it and finding solutions for the distinctive wildlife problems that came along with his newfound ecosystem. A yearlong Army deployment in 2004 to Afghanistan put things on hold for Bruha. After his return to Oklahoma, he decided it was time to advance his wildlife hobby.

Bruha's dream to turn his hobby into a business came closer to reality in 2007 when he won third place in SpiritBank's Tulsa Entrepreneurial Spirit Award contest.

Driving skunk-striped trucks also drew attention.

"We started marketing ourselves to be attractive prospects for TV show production companies," Bruha said.

Today Bruha is the subject of a cable television series on the Animal Planet channel. …

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