Career summary

Details for Forest and Conservation Workers


Description

Under supervision, perform manual labor necessary to develop, maintain, or protect forest, forested areas, and woodlands through such activities as raising and transporting tree seedlings; combating insects, pests, and diseases harmful to trees; and building erosion and water control structures and leaching of forest soil. Includes forester aides, seedling pullers, and tree planters.

Tasks

  • Check equipment to ensure that it is operating properly.
  • Confer with other workers to discuss issues such as safety, cutting heights, or work needs.
  • Gather, package, or deliver forest products to buyers.
  • Sow or harvest cover crops, such as alfalfa.
  • Spray or inject vegetation with insecticides to kill insects or to protect against disease or with herbicides to reduce competing vegetation.
  • Maintain tallies of trees examined and counted during tree marking or measuring efforts.
  • Identify diseased or undesirable trees and remove them, using power saws or hand saws.
  • Drag cut trees from cutting areas and load trees onto trucks.
  • Sort tree seedlings, discarding substandard seedlings, according to standard charts or verbal instructions.
  • Operate skidders, bulldozers, or other prime movers to pull a variety of scarification or site preparation equipment over areas to be regenerated.
  • Explain or enforce regulations regarding camping, vehicle use, fires, use of buildings, or sanitation.
  • Perform fire protection or suppression duties, such as constructing fire breaks or disposing of brush.
  • Examine and grade trees according to standard charts and staple color-coded grade tags to limbs.
  • Erect signs or fences, using posthole diggers, shovels, or other hand tools.
  • Fight forest fires or perform prescribed burning tasks under the direction of fire suppression officers or forestry technicians.
  • Provide assistance to forest survey crews by clearing site-lines, holding measuring tools, or setting stakes.
  • Select or cut trees according to markings or sizes, types, or grades.
  • Maintain campsites or recreational areas, replenishing firewood or other supplies and cleaning kitchens or restrooms.
  • Thin or space trees, using power thinning saws.
  • Select tree seedlings, prepare the ground, or plant the trees in reforestation areas, using manual planting tools.
  • Prune or shear tree tops or limbs to control growth, increase density, or improve shape.

Interests

  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Education, training, experience

  • Education - Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.

Knowledge

  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Economics and Accounting - Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Transportation - Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
  • Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Skills

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