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A forester is a person who practices forestry, the science, art, and profession of managing forests. Foresters engage in a broad range of activities including timber harvesting, ecological restoration and management of protected areas. Foresters manage forests to provide a variety of objectives including direct extraction of raw material, outdoor recreation, conservation, hunting and aesthetics. Emerging management practices include managing forestlands for biodiversity, carbon sequestration and air quality.

A forester is also a title used widely during Medieval times. The forester usually held a position equal to a sheriff or local law enforcer. He was responsible for patrolling the woodlands on a lord or noble's property. His duties included negotiating deals for the sale of lumber and timber and stopping poachers from illegally hunting. Many times wanted criminals would hide in a forest. When this occurred it was the duty of the Forester to organize armed gangs to capture the criminal. Often foresters held titles of prominence in their local communities, and acted as barristers and arbitrators. Their pay was usually above average and they could make a decent living.

Many people confuse the role of the forester with that of the logger, but most foresters are concerned not only with the harvest of timber, but also with the sustainable management of forests to (in the words of Gifford Pinchot) "provide the greatest good for the greatest number in the long term". Another notable forester, Jack Westoby, remarked that "forestry is concerned not with trees, but with how trees can serve people".

Career

USA

The average salary of foresters in the United Statesmarker in 2002 was $46,000. Beginning foresters with bachelor's degrees make considerably less. Those with master's degrees are able to command salaries closer to the average. The Council for Higher Education Accreditation considers the Society of American Foresters as the principle accreditor for academic degree programs in professional forestry, both at a Bachelor's and Master's level.

Usually a bachelor's degree is considered the minimum education required, but some individuals are able to secure a job without a college education based on their experience. Some states have a licensing requirement for foresters, and most of those require at least a four year degree.

United Kingdom

Salaries for newly qualified foresters start in the region of £24,000 (2007). Education to Bachelor's degree standard is normally required.

Notable foresters



See also



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