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8 Steps to Become a Forester In Canada

Have you considered becoming a Forester in Canada? And what to expect if you decide to work as a Forester. If this is something you’re interested in, this is the guide for you!

A career as a forester in Canada is a fantastic choice for people who enjoy working outdoors and want to make a positive impact on the environment. Moreso, Foresters are in high demand in the agriculture and wildlife industries because they help manage and protect forests and parks.

Understanding the responsibilities and obligations of a forester might assist you in your career search. In this guide, we’ll address the question, “What does a forester do?” as well as explain how to become a forester in Canada and go over the necessary skills.

Who is a Forester?

A forester is someone who works in the field of forestry, which is the science, art, and profession of managing forests. Foresters work on a variety of projects, including ecological restoration and protected area management.

Likewise, Foresters work to achieve a number of goals, such as direct raw material extraction, outdoor enjoyment, conservation, hunting, and aesthetics. To sum up, Forest management for biodiversity, carbon sequestration, and air quality are examples of emerging management methods.

What does a forester do?

The answer to the question “What does a forester do?” is that they are the specialists in charge of forest ecology. They are mainly employed by the government or private wildlife conservation organizations.

Furthermore, Foresters, often known as forest managers, are responsible for making decisions that balance the demands of the forest with those of the surrounding community. The preservation of the forest immediately translates into the production of many ordinary household commodities, such as timber, spices, and medicine, hence a forester’s job is quite important. A forester’s responsibilities include the following:

  • Creating management plans and strategies
  • Scheduling timber harvests
  • Supervising the harvesting of timber
  • Inventory management
  • Forest inventories
  • Establishing short- and long-term forest management strategies
  • Verification of adherence to government regulations
  • Land quality management
  • Forest fire suppression
  • Trees need to be planted and managed.
  • The harvest of forest raw resources
  • Protection of wildlife.
  • protection against erosion
  • Ensuring that the forest’s air and water quality is unblemished
  • Enforcing forestry norms and laws
  • Controlling insects and diseases

Is forestry a good career in Canada?

Certainly, the answer to this question is yes! In Canada, forestry experts and professionals have a lot of job opportunities. According to the Canadian government, there will be enough job searchers to fill employment opportunities in this field in the near future.

What is a forester’s average salary in Canada?

In Canada, the national average salary for a forester is $51,044 per year. For instance, Fredericton, New Brunswick; Edmonton, Alberta; Vanderhoof, British Columbia; and Vancouver, British Columbia are among the best-paying cities for foresters.

Within these areas, foresters can expect to work in lush, temperate forests. In general, foresters work outside a lot, but they can also help keep a forest healthy from the office or the lab. They spend most of their time researching and maintaining their physical stamina. A forester’s workweeks are typically 40 hours long, however, hours can vary due to situations.

How to become a forester in Canada in 10 Steps

Definitely, these are the steps you can take to become a forester in Canada:

1. Earn a degree

Becoming a competent forest manager necessitates a precise set of educational requirements. A bachelor’s degree in forestry or forestry engineering from an authorized university is an option. Getting a master’s degree or a doctorate can boost your value to potential employers, however, it isn’t required. A bachelor’s degree takes four years, and a master’s degree takes 18 months to two years. You can devote up to six years to become a forester.

2. Get hands-on experience

It’s necessary to have at least two years of field experience before becoming a professional forester. Truly, this experience is crucial because it is required for certain forest manager certifications.

In the first place, interning at logging corporations, oil companies, environmental consultancy firms, or provincial government offices can help you get this experience after graduation.

You can also learn the skills and characteristics needed to become a great forester throughout the internship.

At times, the project managers or senior technicians can show you how to make decisions and analyze data in the office. Learning how to do research in the lab can also be beneficial. When you find a full-time job, you’ll be glad you have these combined skills.

3. Decide on a field of study

You might choose from a variety of specialized professions as a forester. For example, an ecologist, a forest planner, a forest industry researcher, a forest technician, or a geomatic specialist are all options.

Similarly, investigating the differences and responsibilities of these roles might assist you in deciding which specialism to pursue. If you prefer working in the field, you can become a biologist or work in the forestry industry’s outdoor sector. So, choosing a specialized role early on also saves time because you’ll know exactly what training and certifications you’ll need.

4. Get your certification

Before they can call themselves professionals, all foresters must pass a certification evaluation and examination. As an aspiring forester, you can learn more about the prerequisites for becoming a licensed professional by contacting your province’s regulatory forestry agency.

These criteria can range from a basic certification assessment to an examination. A credential can assist you in your job search because hiring managers and organizations want credibility before you can be considered for an interview.

If you want to work in forestry in Ontario, for example, you’ll need to pass the Ontario Forest Policy and Administration (OPFA) exam. Eligible applicants usually take the exam within five years of completing their guided work experience.

5. Submit an application for membership

It’s critical to apply for membership with your province’s forestry governing authority. If we’re talking about Ontario, it’s important to note that passing the OPFA exam isn’t enough to practise forestry in the province.

Before accepting an application, the OPFA needs the submission of several documents as well as the fulfilment of certain conditions. The following are some prerequisites for registering with the OPFA:

  • must be at least 18 years old;
  • submit a character witness form demonstrating the applicant’s good character;
  • and submit an application document to the registrar in a manner approved by the governing council.
  • appropriate documentation of the application cost that is required
  • a degree from a Canadian Forestry Accreditation Board-accredited university program (CFAB)
  • 18 months of related post-graduation work experience
  • two registered members with sufficient sponsorship reports

6. Put together a résumé

Before applying for the position of a forester, you must create a CV that displays your greatest abilities and education. Take the time, as you would with any other employment resume, to make sure the overview is clear and concise.

If you’re applying for entry-level or higher employment, make sure to include a personalized cover letter. A cover letter explains your qualifications and how you can provide value to the organization.

7. Get ready for the interview

If an employer is interested in the skills shown on your CV, they may contact you after you submit your application. The hiring manager will most likely quiz you on the most recent forest development policies and industry trends. And so, be prepared for that! It’s critical for a forester to stay current with the newest industry practices.

Essentially, it’s critical to do your homework about the firm you applied to because the hiring manager will almost certainly inquire as to why you chose them in particular. Make sure you write a thank-you note after the interview to express your thanks for the opportunity to further your career.

8. Make it a point to learn new things on a regular basis

Finally, it becomes more difficult to safeguard wildlife, prevent erosion, and protect trees from diseases as the complexities of the forest’s ecology expand and the climate changes. It is, therefore, critical to be aware of the most recent scientific developments in the field of forestry.

Demands on the woods have never been higher, yet thanks to contemporary research, you can remain ahead of these changes and flourish in your work. In addition, if your employer offers training programs, take advantage of them while you’re still learning the ropes.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a demand for forestry jobs in Canada?

Forestry professionals are allowed to come to Canada if they are included on the Canadian NOC List with the code 2122. Despite the fact that many forestry experts have moved to Canada in recent years, foresters are still in high demand across the country, on both a national and provincial level.

How can I get started in a forestry career?

Education. Forest and conservation employees normally require a high school education, whereas forest and conservation technicians require an associate’s degree, and conservation scientists and foresters require a bachelor’s degree.

How can I work for the Forest Service?

To apply for any Canadian federal job, including Forest Service jobs, you must apply through To do so, you will need to open an account and this can take some time to set up.

How much does a forester make?

A forester’s average annual salary in Canada is roughly $61,790.

Is getting a forestry degree difficult?

Although forestry isn’t as well-known as some of the other science-based fields, such as chemistry, engineering, or wildlife biology, an undergraduate degree in the field is not only intellectually difficult but also opens up a wide range of career options and specialities.


In Conclusion, to become a forester in Canada, you need to be well trained and certified by a Canadian Forestry body. Similarly, a forester’s profession requires maintaining forest ecosystems and wildlife conservation. Surprisingly, a forester’s average annual salary in Canada is $61,790.

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