Trapper John rescues Cooper's Hawk.

John Schmidt, aka "Trapper John," safely captured and released this Cooper's hawk that was unable to find its way out of a warehouse. Trapper John is an on-call rescuer for the Humane Society of Louisiana.


Hawk rescued from Cox Cable Warehouse.

Although this is the turkey season, a Louisiana Humane Society on-call rescuer recently dealt with another type of bird. John Schmidt, a wildlife conservationist who is also known as "Trapper John," rescued a Cooper's hawk that was unable to find its way out of a Cox Cable warehouse. Wearing night goggles, Schmidt captured the bird with a net after several attempts. The hawk was released unharmed. Cooper's hawks have short, broad wings and a long, round-ended tail with dark bands. Pesticides were blamed for population declines in the past, but numbers are increasing. These forest hawks also seem to be adapting to life in urban areas and are seen more often.

Times Picayune, November 23rd, 2008


(Jefferson) - Cox Cable recently discovered that an unusual bird had flown into one of its warehouses, located at 342 Edwards Ave, and couldn't find its way out. To assist the bird, who turned out to be a Cooper's Hawk, whose numbers are finally increasing after several years of decline, Cox employees contacted John Schmidt, a licensed wildlife conservationist and on-call rescuer for the Humane Society of Louisiana, who was called to the scene to assess the situation. John decided that it was best to try and trap the bird, which has short, broad wings and a long, round-ended tail with dark bands, do a health evaluation, and try to release the bird.

Using night goggles and a net, John was able to capture the bird after several attempts. After being fed and watered, the bird was released unharmed. "We are pleased that Cox Cable knew to call in an expert like John to deal with this situation. As wildlife habitat becomes scarcer, we will be interacting with more species and different animals in our urban settings, so it is very important that we have experts like John, who has caught virtually every type of wild bird and creature, including alligators, mallards, and boars, who knows how to handle wildlife and where to release them. Most of us, even those of us in the animal protection field, lack this training and skill," says Jeff Dorson, Executive Director of the Humane Society.

John Schmidt, otherwise known as Trapper John, may be reached by calling 504-415-5504. The Humane Society of Louisiana can be reached by calling 1-888-6-humane or by visiting their website at


Cooper's Hawk Gets Second Chance.

An injured Redtailed Hawk captured for the Louisiana Humane Society on another call.