What to expect from a career in forestry

For someone who is one with nature and enjoys the great outdoors, then a career in forestry is a sensible career to undertake. Many naturalists are forestry workers in one form or another and when they’re in their career, they know it was the right choice. This kind of career involves different jobs from entry-level job titles to resource managers. Balancing forestry priorities with the ever-present wildlife, energy sourcing, and the environment is a tricky thing. Climate change is also a factor where forests are concerned too.

Looking the Part

To work in forestry, it’s necessary to look the part. Wearing a pair of chainsaw trousers, which tend to be water repellent and with an adjustable waistband is a good idea. You should consider investing in these chainsaw trousers from engelbert strauss because of their modern design, which includes braces to hold them up and vents at the side to keep you cooler. Plenty of zipper pockets let you store different items while in the forest too. There’s also shoe hooks and bands to protect these trousers from dirt or insects.

The mixture of polyamide and a little polyurethane along with polyester cut protection offers a durable mix of materials and confidence when out on the job. They’re available in various sizes and have a unisex design. They also look the part, so you won’t appear out of place, even on your first day.

Expecting Change and Unpredictability as Standard

Foresters go through interesting, evolving careers.

While early jobs might involve similar but still important tasks like sizing up trees using exact measurements and confirming their grade, you could also get drafted into assisting in a local land survey or dealing with an infestation issue within a forest. While infestation hurting woodland isn’t as common as laypeople like to believe, affecting less than half a percent of forests, it still must be managed.

Later, jobs tend to veer more towards the administration or the managerial side. Also, depending on the type of work that you do and how necessary it is, changing jobs over time is perhaps more common than in some other industries where people stick with the same employer for many years.

Being Outdoors in the Early Years is Normal

Given the entry-level tasks and roles undertaken in the first few years of a forestry career, most forestry graduates find themselves outdoors fairly frequently. You should be prepared for this reality. Certainly, being outdoors should become second nature to you. Walking in forests, crossing brooks and streams, and maybe camping out familiarizes you with the environment.

As practical knowledge and experience grow, management roles are offered more often. At this point, being in an office – even one built out in a trailer near the forest – is quite likely. People tending to the forest in the area will see then you less often.

Being Willing to Relocate

Woodland in the UK is located around the country. It’s not prevalent in just one spot. As a result, when wanting or needing to change employers, relocating is not out of the question.

Jobs offered in the forestry world tend to be within communities where working in forestry is a common profession. Even with a degree, it is up to the individual to show initiative and drive if they wish to move up in their career. Often, trying different roles within forestry and being willing to relocate demonstrates the right desire and commitment.

A Wealth of Different Roles

The types of roles available with a forestry degree include dealing with timber companies as managers or assistant managers, woodland officers in charge of specific woodland under their purview, or being a surveyor.

In the case of a forestry surveyor, this might be done inside a forestry-related company or it could be while being a business owner. There are surveying companies that provide meaningful feedback to forestry owners, which lets them decide on the best course of action based on the reports provided to them.

How to Do Well in a Forestry Career

Being good with facts and figures is a useful trait, as is the ability to retain key pieces of information. There’s no returning to the office to check something out and most forests lack a mobile phone connection to use a smartphone to connect. Therefore, it’s a bit analogue in places. People who can think on their feet, are good with numbers, and calmly deal with complicated situations tend to get ahead.

In terms of career progression, getting into an assistant manager and then a lead manager position is usually the best approach. While a master’s or a PhD do have their place, they’re often not necessary to advance through management when working in forestry.

A career in forestry in the UK is a good one. When having a passion for it and some degree of flexibility about where you work, then it’s an excellent career choice.

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