Bruce was born July 13, 1960 and grew up in Ponchatoula, LA as the oldest of five brothers and sisters, including him. Although he would help take care of his two brothers and two sisters, he was always a prankster. Family get-togethers now consist of remembering the many practical jokes played on family and friends, and of course, pulling new pranks. Bruce's mother, brothers and sisters and their families are very close and try to get together as often as possible.
Bruce and Janet Kliebert met when they were in Jr. High. In 1980, Bruce married Janet Kliebert. You may recognize her name from Kliebert's Alligator & Turtle Farm. Bruce began working at Kliebert's around age 20 and moved on the farm property when he married Janet. Over a period of thirty plus years, he learned from his father-in-law, many aspects of the business and was able to take on more responsibility. With Janet’s help with the business/paperwork aspect (among other various things), they ran the business together with Janet's father for over thirty years.
In 1981 at age 21, Bruce and Janet had a daughter named Lorraine Michelle, and a daughter named Janice Marie in 1984. The same year Janice was born, the farm was opened up to the public, and public tours of the farm began. Bruce, still owns the alligator farm but because of the time the show takes up and Kliebert family issues, does not run the farm right now. However, if you ever visited the farm and remember a t our guide who would get in the ponds and hand feed the gators - that was probably Bruce!
Lorraine, Bruce and Janet's eldest daughter, married her Jr. High sweetheart in 2000. Bruce keeps busy in his spare time with his granddaughters. Jillian Marie was born in 2003 and LoriAnn Katherine was born in 2010. He does everything he possibly can with them and lets them get away with pretty much everything! Lorraine is a stay at home mom (was a bank teller for 8 years) and she helps Janet run the business aspect of Bruce Mitchell Productions; her husband is a local police officer.
Janice, Bruce and Janet's youngest daughter, works in the speech and pathology field at a list of southern Louisiana schools. She acquired her bachelors degree at Southeastern Louisiana University and lived in Indiana for 5 years where she acquired her masters. Janice works with the computer and technical aspect of Bruce Mitchell Productions.
While working at the farm, Bruce was asked by the A & E Network if would like to participate in a documentary on the History Channel. Being that the History Channel was (and still is) the most watched network in the Mitchell household, how could he say no. From there Bruce and Swamp People were connected.
Bruce spends his wild gator season working from daylight to dark (and sometimes later), the full 30 days. He gets up around 4:00am eats his oatmeal and drinks lots of coffee. He packs up his water ( it's so hot you can't risk dehydration ), he and Ron head out for the water. Bruce usually gets in mid-day, but work is not even close to being done. He will go out on the water to hunt/put lines out up to three times a day. In the past, he would unload and skin his gators (which includes de-boning and packaging the meat) and then go back out to set lines again for the next morning. Presently, he meets up with and sells all of his gators, whole – to a local buyer. By nightfall, he's gets home, showers and sleeps his few hours to get up and do it all again.
During his off season he tries his best to keep up with his granddaughters, family, friends, work around the house and hobbies. However, he and Janet usually spend a couple of weeks each month traveling in their camper to “meet and greets” to meet fans and sign autographs.
Bruce's hobbies include camping, hunting and fishing. He loves gunsmithing and collecting guns and knives. He enjoys going to their family camp on the river, where he is in the process of building cabins to rent out to the public. Motorcycling is another big hobby of his! He's never really been a football/ baseball sports type of guy. Of course, he supports our New Orleans Saints, but doesn't usually put the games into his schedule. Through the years his number one hobby has become outdoor cooking! Early last year he released his first cookbook and plans for his second cookbook are in the works
It's so ironic that such a good ole hometown country-boy was chosen for this. Bruce has always worked hard for what he and his family has. If you speak with any of his friends and family- even fans he meets out on the road – they will tell you how deserving Bruce is of this new found fame, because he is still the same kind, giving and good-hearted guy he was before. Bruce is now one of the main reality stars on History Channels hit show Swamp People. Just concluding his 7th season of filming. He has a huge fan base and makes new friends everywhere he goes!