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NOC Code: NOC Code: 2223 Occupation: Forestry Technologists and Technicians
Occupation Description: Occupation Description:
Forestry technologists and technicians may work independently or perform technical and supervisory functions in support of forestry research, forest management, forest harvesting, forest resource conservation and environmental protection. They are employed by the forest industry sector, provincial and federal governments, consulting firms, and other industries and institutions or they may be self-employed. Forestry technologists and technicians may work independently or perform technical and supervisory functions in support of forestry research, forest management, forest harvesting, forest resource conservation and environmental protection. They are employed by the forest industry sector, provincial and federal governments, consulting firms, and other industries and institutions or they may be self-employed.

  • Click on any of the Essential Skills to view sample workplace tasks for this occupation.
  • Skill levels are assigned to tasks: Level 1 tasks are the least complex and level 4 or 5 tasks (depending upon the specific skill) are the most complex. Skill levels are associated with workplace tasks and not the workers performing these tasks.
  • Scroll down the page to get information on career planning, education and training, and employment and volunteer opportunities.

Table will display the Skill Level for the Noc specified
Essential Skills Essential Skills Levels
Reading Text Reading Text 1 2 3 4
Writing Writing 1 2 3 4
Document Use Document Use 1 2 3 4
Computer Use Computer Use 1 2 3
Oral Communication Oral Communication 1 2 3
Money Math Money Math 1 2 3 4
Scheduling or Budgeting and Accounting Scheduling or Budgeting and Accounting 1 2 3 4
Measurement and Calculation Measurement and Calculation 1 2 3
Data Analysis Data Analysis 1 2 3 4
Numerical Estimation Numerical Estimation 1 2 3
Job Task Planning and Organizing Job Task Planning and Organizing 1 2 3
Decision Making Decision Making 1 2 3 4
Problem Solving Problem Solving 1 2 3
Finding Information Finding Information 1 2 3 4
Critical Thinking Critical Thinking 1 2 3


  • The skill levels represented in the above chart illustrate the full range of sample tasks performed by experienced workers and not individuals preparing for or entering this occupation for the first time.
  • Note that some occupational profiles do not include all Numeracy and Thinking Essential Skills.

If you would like to print a copy of the chart and sample tasks, click on the "Print Occupational Profile" button at the top of the page.


Reading Text
  • Read brief email from clients, supervisors and co-workers. For example, technologists may read messages from clients about plans to build access routes or requests for information about services offered by their companies from potential clients. (1)
  • Read newspaper and magazine articles to learn what is happening in the area and identify developments which may affect your work. For example, read newspaper articles about new sawmills in the area since additional logging will put further demands on forests you manage. (2)
  • Read a variety of pamphlets and guides published by government agencies and industry suppliers. Read about new regulations and new products so that you can pass information on to clients. (2)
  • Read labels on pesticides and herbicides. For example, check herbicide labels for directions on how to mix an application solution. (2)
  • Read accident reports to learn about the circumstances of mishaps. Analyze these accounts for common themes and use the information to provide better instructions to crews. (2)
  • Read forestry practices and reference manuals to upgrade knowledge and learn about new forestry management techniques. For example, read reference manuals for Canadian trees to learn about the optimal growing conditions, water requirements and companion plants for unfamiliar species. Read forestry practice manuals for sampling techniques, measurement parameters and wood classifications. Read procedures for recording field observations in scaling manuals. (3)
  • Read notes from town hall meetings. For example, review personal notes and meeting minutes summarising perspectives of stakeholders while preparing harvesting plans. Identify relevant concerns such as the impact of tree harvesting on trapping lines or endangered wildlife populations. (3)
  • Read professional journals to learn about new forestry practices, trends and innovations in your area of work. For example, read an article describing successful new approaches to renaturalize former agricultural lands. (4)
  • Read a variety of federal, provincial and municipal acts, regulations and by-laws. For example, read acts and regulations such as the Crown Forest Sustainability Act, the Forests Act, the Wildlife Habitat Act and the Watercourses Protection Regulations. Integrate information from various sections of the regulations to advise clients how to proceed when they are constructing roads or carrying out silviculture operations. When working on forest management plans, review legislation to ensure that you correctly interpret and abide by all rules and regulations. (4)
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Writing
  • Write brief notes about conversations, meetings, resource exploitation activities, wildlife observations, topographical features, uncommon plant species and changes to landscape since previous visits in notebooks, logs and daily diaries. (1)
  • Write short email and letters to clients, employees, colleagues and supervisors to request information, respond to questions, summarize discussions and confirm decisions. (2)
  • Write comments, explanations and instructions on entry forms. For example, write several paragraphs describing observations and summaries on pre-commercial thinning forms. (2)
  • Write notices and bulletins for co-workers, contractors and clients. For example, write notices to inform employees of changes to environmental legislation. Try to make the legal information easier to understand by rewriting in plain language. (3)
  • Write forestry management plans which describe historical and current land use and propose objectives for future use. The plans can be up to twenty pages in length and are forwarded to government departments for review and approval. Supplement the text with maps, wildlife observations and measurement data. (4)
  • Write progress reports for management, company shareholders and compliance committee members. In operational reports, describe the status of projects, detailing such things as costs, benefits and analyzing newly-implemented procedures. In compliance reports, describe each stage of investigations, difficulties encountered and recommendations for continued investigation. (4)
  • Write lengthy proposals for large-scale tree plantings. These proposals detail strategic plans and are intended to persuade stakeholders to support the projects or programs suggested. (4)
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Document Use
  • Observe markings and signs on trees indicating which ones to cut when thinning or to remove when constructing access roads. (1)
  • Get quantities, seed purity percentages, species names, assigned codes and mixture rates from a variety of labels including those attached to trees, bags of seed and herbicide and pesticide containers. (1)
  • Enter scheduling, budgeting, operations and field data into tables. For example, enter diameters, types, number and utilization of trees into data collection tables. (2)
  • Scan completed forms for silviculture and forestry data. For example, review data such as tree diameters, population distributions and wood utilization on plantation and reforestation evaluation forms. (2)
  • Obtain information from a variety of tables. For example, scan reference tables published by natural resources ministries to determine the appropriate stocking levels for particular tree species, read tables that indicate class, category, height and quality of tree stands in parcels of forest land and read tables containing the common names, nutrient analyses and application methods for common fertilizers. (2)
  • Complete a variety of reporting, survey and administrative forms. For example, record measurements, stem counts, species dimensions, terrain quality and type, and class and quality of trees when collecting field data. Complete safety inspection checklists when conducting site visits. Those working in companies registered by the International Organization for Standardization complete numerous lengthy audit forms. (3)
  • Take information from maps and aerial photographs when planning harvesting operations. For example, use three-dimensional scopes to interpret photographs of tree stands taken over fifty-year periods to determine logging histories and to identify boundary changes. Use topographical maps in conjunction with compass and global positioning systems readings to become familiar with the relief of the land and to map access roads. (4)
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Computer Use
  • Exchange email with attachments and select recipient names from email address books or lists. (2)
  • Use Internet browsers like Netscape and search engines like Google and Yahoo to conduct multiple searches for needed forestry management information. Bookmark commonly-used industry and government websites. (2)
  • Use statistical analysis software. For example, a technologist may enter values from an audit plot into analysis software such as Raster to determine variability between plots or to learn whether a particular plot is viable for auditing purposes. (3)
  • Use spreadsheet software like Excel to create a variety of spreadsheets. Input formulas to perform calculations and analyze data. Produce graphs to illustrate data in monthly and annual reports or at public presentations. (3)
  • Use database software such as Access to maintain records on private landowners. Enter and retrieve information from specialized forest management databases like Sylva II or the Natural Resources and Value Information System database. Consult and extract information from a variety of map databases and import maps into other software applications to create detailed property maps. (3)
  • Use graphics software. For example, use presentation software such as PowerPoint to create presentations for public meetings. Use Adobe Photoshop or Image Expert to manipulate digital images from cameras, scanners or the Internet. (3)
  • Use word processing. For example, write and format letters, annual reports and forestry management plans. Use a full range of word processing and formatting functions to produce longer documents which contain tables of contents, annexes, indices and bibliographies. Forestry technologists and technicians may import tables and graphics from other applications. (3)
  • Use computer and software applications. For example, use mapping software such as Arcview and global positioning systems to create maps for forest management plans. Import scanned photographs and maps from commercial databases and then create new layers of information on them. Draw topographical features such as buildings and newly-constructed access roads. Indicate boundaries, cutovers and proposed harvesting areas. (3)
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Oral Communication
  • Co-ordinate work and share information with co-workers and supervisors. For example, discuss daily or weekly work plans with supervisors and radio other forestry technologists to confirm that all required equipment has been taken to work sites. (1)
  • Request services or supplies. For example, contact suppliers to arrange for the repair of broken machinery. Be clear and concise, as you frequently need to provide directions to sites that are unfamiliar to suppliers and contractors. (2)
  • Give instructions to employees you supervise and receive progress updates. For example, when conducting site visits meet with logging crew supervisors to point out environmental factors they should consider before starting harvesting operations. (2)
  • Meet with supervisors to discuss harvesting plans and to receive guidance. For example, meet with forest engineers to discuss possible expansions of forest-harvesting plans for particular areas. Discuss the potential disruption to flora and fauna and ways to protect the environment. (3)
  • Deliver training sessions and make presentations. For example, run workshops for conservation authority representatives on pest invasions in local forests or give presentations to small groups of industry representatives to explain forest management plans for specific areas. (3)
  • May reassure members of the public who express concerns and misgivings about forestry practices, sometimes with hostility. For example, emphasize in discussions with conservationists how professional harvesting helps maintain the forest and reassure them that wildlife and bodies of water will be protected during harvesting operations. (3)
  • Inform and educate private landowners about ways to protect wildlife and fish habitat, promote forest regeneration and preserve the landscape. For example, explain best logging practices to woodlot owners. Discuss best practices in cutting, delimbing, felling, slashing and hauling methods. (3)
  • Discuss joint work projects with colleagues at other companies and government agencies to get confirmation, updates and information about harvesting and planting operations. (3)
  • Mediate disputes between workers. Calm down the employees, ask for clarifications and use rephrasing techniques to confirm your understanding of the conflict. Use tact and assertiveness to ensure that certain protocols are respected and that problematic situations do not get out of hand. (3)
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Money Math
  • Purchase supplies and equipment using credit cards and purchase orders. (1)
  • Write sales contracts for forest management plans. Calculate the cost of forestry technicians and labourers at an hourly rate, and charges for travel using a per kilometre rate. Add equipment fees, calculate discounts and subtract any federal government financial assistance credits which may apply. Finally, calculate provincial and federal taxes on the totals. (4)
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Scheduling or Budgeting and Accounting
  • Determine work crew schedules. For example, determine short and long-term schedules for crews of up to twenty seasonal employees for a seven-month planting season by taking into consideration the work preferences of individuals, vacations and statutory holidays. (2)
  • Establish tree planting budgets for conservation authorities. Determine the number of trees required and calculate associated site preparation, planting and herbicide costs. (3)
  • Establish forest assessment and management schedules. Typically, schedules are based on a five-year rotation; however, set yearly schedules to ensure that all forests are assessed within the five-year period. Those working in nursery and orchard operations may schedule various aspects of tree breeding and crop operations, taking into consideration the number of employees available and the company's goals and objectives. (3)
  • Prepare multi-year business plans. For example, prepare five-year forest harvesting and management plans with yearly breakdowns for amounts to be harvested, numbers of work crews necessary, machinery and material costs, and capital costs for infrastructure such as bridges. Yearly budgets may need to be adjusted to take into consideration special projects or amendments to provincial rules and regulations. (4)
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Measurement and Calculation
  • Calculate areas of forest plots in square metres and hectares. (2)
  • Take measurements using survey equipment. For example, use global positioning systems to calculate areas and record survey points, measuring tapes and transits to measure length and width of access roads and clinometers to calculate the slopes of washed out riverbanks. (3)
  • Use industry-specific instruments to take measurements. For example, use radius tapes, Biltmore sticks and callipers to measure tree heights and diameters during cruises. Use callipers to take precise measurements of tree heights, root collar diameters and the shoot and root lengths of seedlings to within one thousandth of a millimetre. (3)
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Data Analysis
  • Compare data from sampling and testing to standards to identify whether they are within acceptable limits. For example, compare individual and average stump heights from site audits with the provincial standards to ensure that stump heights do not exceed the maximum allowable. (2)
  • Analyze data collected over a period of time and draw conclusions. For example, analyze and interpret aerial photographs and forestry maps taken over ten year spans to study the effects of logging on physical features, flora and fauna. Determine regeneration rates by examining new growth identified through forest assessments and predict when shrubs and herbaceous plants will crowd out seedlings. (3)
  • Analyze survey results to determine absolute population numbers, percentages of each species and the rates at which species occur. For example, extrapolate gypsy moth survey results to determine the total numbers present per hectare, calculate trees per hectare rates for forest populations or determine the percentage of particular species in woodlots or cutting areas. (4)
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Numerical Estimation
  • Make frequent small estimations when collecting field data. For example, estimate the age of stunted trees by considering the effects of factors such as weather and disease. Estimate the percentage of crown closure in a tree stand by observing how much light filters through. Estimate the number of diseased or injured trees which need to be harvested or estimate the grade of a slope using visual indicators. (1)
  • Estimate the value of wood by considering the volume, species, quality and current market value. (2)
  • Estimate the time needed to clear woodlots, considering numbers of experienced workers available and the terrain where the operations will take place. (3)
  • Estimate the yield possibilities for specific forest leases, taking into account forested area, stand age and quality. (3)
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Job Task Planning and Organizing
  • The priorities of forestry technologists and technicians are determined by the goals and objectives of their organizations. Within the framework of seasonal routines, they work independently and are free to plan and organize their tasks to meet project deadlines and goals. Those working with regional conservation authorities and paper companies may be assigned to the management of particular parcels of land and are responsible for creating, implementing and monitoring forest management plans. Their work plans are subject to frequent revisions due to weather changes, equipment breakdowns, pest and disease outbreaks or changes in legislation. Forestry technologists and technicians plan the work schedules of planting and harvesting crews. Those who work on one to five-year forest management plans play a significant role in strategic and operational planning for their organizations. (3)
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Decision Making
  • Decide to modify operational procedures or systems. For example, forestry technologists and technicians in nurseries may decide to change pesticide application methods after researching various methods and comparing the safety and effectiveness of each. (2)
  • Decide where to purchase supplies, equipment and nursery stock. For example, forestry technicians decide where to buy seeds, seedlings and rootstock by considering previous experience with suppliers, the quality of the stock, transportation costs and prices. (2)
  • Make tree-breeding decisions. For example, technologists working in tree nurseries and seed orchards decide which trees to use as breeding stock to develop strains that have particular genetic qualities. (3)
  • Make access road planning decisions. For example, decide efficient routes to use to access woodlots and forest plots. Examine maps and aerial photographs, survey the areas by foot and consider the terrain before deciding where to build the most cost-effective routes. (3)
  • Make decisions about silviculture activities. For example, decide how to prepare sites for harvesting and whether to thin diseased trees. (3)
  • Decide to stop work being done by logging companies and contractors. For example, if you observe contractors carrying out illegal logging, you may decide to issue 'stop work' orders and seize all logs under the Crown Forest Sustainability Act. Consider whether the loggers responsible for the illegal logging have been in violation before and whether they have damaged the habitat. Balance the need to maintain good relations with the public and loggers against the need to protect forest lands from illegal and harmful practices. (4)
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Problem Solving
  • Face power failures and equipment breakdowns. For example, technicians in nurseries and tree farms may find out that power failure or equipment malfunction have knocked out ventilation or heating systems for delicate tree seedlings. Speed is essential, and they may have less than half an hour to repair the systems or to start emergency generators. Failure to do so will quickly result in plants freezing in the winter or overheating in the summer. (2)
  • Clients and the public object to proposed harvesting operations. For example, residents may oppose plans to harvest wood in a particular area because it will destroy their trap lines. Forestry technologists and technicians listen to the residents' concerns and revise their harvesting plans to incorporate their suggestions. (2)
  • Employees do not show up for work. When labourers miss work, production is reduced. To keep production high, forestry technicians who supervise work crews keep lists of eligible workers that they can call in to work on short notice. (2)
  • Proposed access routes are not feasible. For example, you may be notified that proposed roads could not be completed as planned because work crews encountered steep, rocky hills. Study aerial photographs, revisit sites and survey them by conducting subsequent flyovers and ground patrols. Using the new information, design alternate approaches. (3)
  • Logging operations have caused damage to the environment. For example, during rainy weather, discover that road-building operations have caused riverbanks to collapse. Work with other professionals to document the extent of the damage and determine appropriate measures to mitigate detrimental effects such as the destruction of spawning grounds. Recommend changes to logging practices to prevent further incidents. (3)
  • Clients and logging companies are not complying with forestry regulations. For example, during an annual audit, a technologist discovers that a landowner has not met the conditions of the forest management plan. They discuss the nature of the non-compliance with the landowners and suggest ways to rectify it. If the owner is unwilling to meet the conditions, the forestry technologist may contact a higher authority such as the forestry association. (3)
  • Employees do not follow procedures or explicit instructions. For example, discover that planters are not placing seedlings according to standards and regulations. Talk to planting crew supervisors to advise them of the deficiencies and to direct them to speak to their crews. Failure to plant properly can result in heavy fines being levied by government regulating agencies. (3)
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Finding Information
  • Find information about land ownership and cutting rights using forestry maps, historical maps and records at Land Title offices. (2)
  • Find information about new technologies, forestry practices, management strategies, environmental regulations and products in technical journals, research papers and related websites. (2)
  • Find acts and regulations on government websites. (2)
  • Find information needed for forestry research. Search for specific topics in textbooks, forestry journals, management reports, magazines and research notes. (2)
  • Question landowners, hunters, contractors and other witnesses during investigations of illegal activities in the woods. Make personal observations on relevant data, such as number of logs, type of equipment present and state of the terrain, during on-site visits to corroborate or invalidate witness statements. (4)
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Critical Thinking
  • Judge the health, production potential and quality of trees in sections of forest. Examine aerial photographs, conduct field measurements and determine the age of the trees. Use expert knowledge of silviculture to gather information about tree types, survey tree populations and to assess forest health. (2)
  • Evaluate the severity of damage done by silviculture operations. Assess the extent of injuries such as scraped bark, broken branches and root damages caused by careless loggers. Also consider the length and depth of skid trails left by machinery. This information is then used to complete damage assessments and assign performance scores to logging companies. (3)
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