10 Highest Paying Forestry Jobs to Consider

10 Highest Paying Forestry Jobs to Consider

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We used the latest data and insights to identify the Highest Paying Forestry Jobs so that you can learn and earn more.

Forestry has many specialized areas. For example, some foresters work in forest management while others are conservation biologists. 

The highest-paying jobs require advanced degrees, skills, and years of experience working in forestry.

We used data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics and other top sources to write this list for forestry majors.

Here are the 10 highest-paying forestry jobs you should consider.

#10. Wildland firefighter

How much do they get paid?

  • Source: Comparably
  • Low Range: $10,000 per year
  • High Range: $169,505 per year
  • Median Pay: $30,940 per year
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Pexels
Credits: Pexels

What do they do?

The wildland firefighter is the first line of defense against forest fires. They work to protect homes, hospitals, and other buildings from destruction.

Wildland firefighting is a job that’s not for the fainthearted. You have to be tough and be ready to work in some pretty intense conditions. But if you’re up for it, it can be an incredibly rewarding career. 

What degrees and skills are usually required?

These firefighters typically have at least an associate degree in forest fire science, but many hold bachelor’s degrees or higher. Some have even gone on to earn their master’s degrees in fire science. You must also be licensed by the state in which you work.

The common skills you should have include: 

  • Physical fitness.
  • Knowledge of wildland fire behavior.
  • Ability to work as part of a team.
  • Mechanical aptitude.
  • Good communication skills.
  • Patience.
  • Attention to detail.
  • Willingness to learn new things constantly.

You can acquire some of these skills through experience, but others require formal training or education.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

Wildland firefighters work in national forests, parks, and on other public lands where there are wildfires. Government agencies and nonprofit organizations employ these professionals.

What’s the best way to get this job?

Once you have your degree and license, you may begin by applying directly to your local fire department. Networking with people who already work in the industry is one sure way of finding a job opportunity. You can also apply directly to an employer that hires wildland firefighters.

You might see a good sample of veterans who are battle-proven and thrilled in the same high stake and high-stress fire-fighting jobs. But, they also need someone who understands forestry to fire-fight effectively.

What’s it like to be a wildland firefighter?

#9. Wildlife Biologists

How much do they get paid?

  • Source: Payscale
  • Low Range: $37,000 per year
  • High Range: $79,000 per year
  • Median Pay: $49,911 per year
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Pexels
Credits: Pexels

What do they do?

Wildlife biologists are the people who make sure that the animals of the world are healthy and thriving. 

They:

  • Study animals and wildlife habitats.
  • Collect information about the animals’ behavior and biology.
  • Collect data on how humans affect both wildlife populations.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

They work for:

  • Conservation organizations like the Nature Conservancy.
  • Private companies.
  • Universities as professors or researchers.
  • Government agencies.
  • Zoos and aquariums.

What degrees and skills are usually required?

Wildlife biologists typically have degrees in biology or zoology. But other degrees such as forestry or environmental science can also qualify you for this job.

Employers are likely to hire you if you need excellent communication skills and attention to detail.

What’s the best way to get this job?

You can start by getting a degree in biology or zoology. But you may also need experience working with wildlife to get a job. You should consider joining internships or volunteer programs. You can also take some kind of training in research methods and data collection techniques.

How do you become a wildlife biologist?

#8. Forest Manager

How much do they get paid?

  • Source: ZipRecruiter
  • Low Range: $15,000 per year
  • High Range: $114,000 per year
  • Median Pay: $52,105 per year
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Pexels
Credits: Pexels

What do they do?

A forest manager is a person in charge of managing, protecting, and tending to the natural resources of a forest. These managers help the forests stay healthy and productive by: 

  • Managing the land.
  • Making sure that trees don’t die off too quickly.
  • Allowing new trees to grow in the place of the dead ones. 

Forestry managers also manage all the other people who work with them to keep the forests healthy, like loggers and biologists.

What degrees and skills are usually required?

You should have at least an undergraduate forestry degree to become a forest manager. You may also want to earn a master’s or other business-related degrees if you wish to work for a private company within a national park or other protected areas. 

This job requires strong leadership and communication skills. Therefore, it would be best to learn these skills to improve your chances of success at work.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

Forest managers work with government agencies or private companies to maintain the health of their forests. They may also work with landowners and clients to ensure that their land is well-managed, both environmentally and financially.

What’s the best way to get this job?

Once you’ve received your education, your next step will be finding an entry-level position as an assistant forest manager at one of these parks or agencies. After gaining experience, you can apply for higher positions to give you even more responsibility in this field.

What’s it like to be a forest manager?

https://youtu.be/HcN78eBov5c

#7. Forest and Conservation Workers

 How much do they get paid?

  • Source: Salary.com
  • Low Range: $38,332 per year
  • High Range: $80,627 per year
  • Median Pay: $56,317  per year 
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Unsplash
Credits: Unsplash

What do they do?

Forest and conservation workers are people who maintain and protect forests. They achieve this by:

  • Planting new trees.
  • Removing invasive species.
  • Studying the health of the forest and measuring its impact on the environment.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

Forest and conservation workers may find employment in forests, national parks, wildlife refuges, and zoos. 

What degrees and skills are usually required?

You can get into this field by studying several disciplines, including a bachelor’s degree in biology, environmental science, forestry science, or botany. 

Besides good communication skills, you should also have physical strength and problem-solving abilities.

What’s the best way to get this job?

You can start by getting an associate degree from an accredited community college or university. Once you’ve completed your degree program, you’ll need at least a year of experience working in a forested area before applying for any jobs. 

What’s it like to be a forest and conservation worker?

#6. Forestry Technicians

 How much do they get paid?

  • Source: Glassdoor
  • Low Range: $23,000 per year
  • High Range: $186,000 per year
  • Median Pay: $59,591 per year
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Unsplash
Credits: Unsplash

What do they do?

Forestry technicians work in forests and other wooded areas, conducting surveys and research on the health of trees, plants, and animals. 

What degrees and skills are usually required?

Employers may hire forestry technicians with at least an associate’s degree. But having a bachelor’s degree in forestry technology will increase your chances of finding a high-paying job. 

These skills will help you stand out from the other forestry technicians: 

  • Good communication skills.
  • Excellent problem-solving ability.
  • Attention to detail.
  • Physical stamina.
  • Strong manual dexterity.

Who’s hiring for these jobs

Forestry technicians may find work in government agencies or nonprofit organizations.

What’s the best way to get this job?

Once you have your degree, you may consider gaining experience through an internship at a local government agency or non-profit organization working with trees or plants. The experience will help you learn more about the field and how to apply for jobs later on.

What’s it like to be a forestry technician?

#5. Silviculturists

How much do they get paid?

  • Source: Glassdoor
  • Low Range: $30,000 per year
  • High Range: $129,000 per year
  • Median Pay: $61,443 per year
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Pexels
Credits: Pexels

What do they do?

Silviculturists are experts who work to preserve and improve forested areas. Their job includes: 

  • Planting new trees or removing unhealthy ones.
  • Managing trees and other vegetation.
  • Remove dead trees that pose a danger to people or property.
  • Protecting the land from fire, insects, disease, and other threats. 

What degrees and skills are usually required?

Silviculturists need a forestry degree or a bachelor’s degree in natural resources management. You may also take biology, ecology, mathematics, and statistics courses. 

Some employers may require a master’s degree in silviculture or forest management. Some states may require additional certification.

You should have strong communication skills and the ability to write reports to boost your chances of bagging high-paying jobs.

They must also be able to write reports about their findings so others can understand them.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

These forestry professionals work for government agencies, nonprofits, private companies, or independent consulting firms. 

What’s the best way to get this job?

There are many ways to enter this field, but the surest way is by earning a forestry degree from an accredited university. Then obtain work experience in the industry before applying for positions with companies that employ silviculturists full-time.

What’s it like to be a silviculturist?

#4. Conservation Scientist

How much do they get paid?

  • Source: ZipRecruiter
  • Low Range: $15,500 per year
  • High Range: $147,500 per year
  • Median Pay: $67,151 per year 
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Unsplash
Credits: Unsplash

What do they do? 

Forest conservation scientists work on projects that involve the management of forests, including reforestation efforts. They make sure that trees are planted in suitable areas for their growth. These forest conservation scientists also develop policies for regulating the use of forest resources.

What degrees and skills are usually required?

Forest conservation scientists have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in biology or forestry. A master’s degree can help you become more competitive when applying for jobs.

Forest conservation scientists have skills that make them valuable members of their team: They’re good at: 

  • Gathering data through fieldwork.
  • Analyzing that data using statistical methods.
  • Presenting the results of their research clearly so that others can learn from it.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

Forest conservation scientists work for government agencies or non-profit organizations.

What degrees and skills are usually required?

There are several ways to get started with your career as a forest conservation scientist. You can volunteer at local parks or wildlife refuges. Or work as an intern at an environmental organization or volunteer at a zoo. Then start applying for positions in this field.

What’s it like to be a conservation scientist?

#3. Procurement Forester

How much do they get paid?

  • Source: Glassdoor
  • Low Range: $24,000 per year
  • High Range: $188,000 per year
  • Median Pay: $67,644 per year
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Pexels
Credits: Pexels

What do they do?

Procurement foresters are responsible for the procurement of wood, paper, and forest products. These experts work with suppliers to ensure the most cost-effective supply chain. 

What degrees and skills are usually required?

Procurement foresters have degrees in forestry management and can also have a master’s degree in business administration (MBA). You should also have experience working with financial data and evaluating market feasibility.

Employers prefer candidates with strong analytical skills, excellent communication, and negotiation skills.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

Procurement foresters work in forestry, logging, pulp, and paper mill companies.

What’s the best way to get this job?

You need at least an associate’s degree from an accredited college or university to enter this field. You can also earn your bachelor’s degree in forestry from an accredited college or university program. You may start looking for internship opportunities or entry-level positions to gain experience in this field with your degree.

What’s it like to be a procurement Forester?

#2. Fire Ecologist

 How much do they get paid?

  • Source: Glassdoor
  • Low Range: $65,000 per year
  • High Range: $167,000 per year
  • Median Pay: $102,044 per year
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Pexels
Credits: Pexels

What do they do?

Fire ecologists are the people who study wildfires and their effects on ecosystems.

These professionals use their expertise to advise governments and fire departments on how to control wildfires and protect people’s lives and property.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

Fire ecologists work for:

  • Government agencies such as the U.S. Forest Service.
  • Private consulting firms.
  • Learning institutions.
  • Private land management companies.

Some fire ecologists work with local governments to help develop plans for managing wildfires.

What degrees and skills are usually required?

A fire ecologist may have an environmental science or forestry degree. You can also have a background in biology or chemistry. But you must:

  • Be able to operate heavy machinery.
  •  Know how to calculate burn ratios (how much fuel there is for a fire).
  • Understand how weather conditions affect fire behavior.

What’s the best way to get this job?

While it is possible to obtain an entry-level position as a fire ecologist without a forestry degree, you should earn at least an associate’s degree before applying for jobs in this field.

Once you have your first job, start working your way up there.

What’s it like to be a fire ecologist?

#1. Forest Logging Manager

How much do they get paid?

  • Source: Comparably
  • Low Range: $99,320 per year
  • High Range: $140,746 per year
  • Median Pay: $112,227 per year
Highest Paying Forestry Jobs : Credits: Pexels
Credits: Pexels

What do they do?

The forest logging manager is responsible for overseeing the log harvesting operations in a forest. They work with the forest manager and logging crew to ensure that all logs are harvested from the forest in the most efficient manner possible.

What degrees and skills are usually required?

Forest Logging Managers need to have a bachelor’s degree in forestry or a related field and at least five years of experience.

They need to be able to lead groups of people, which includes knowing how to communicate with them. A forest Logging manager also needs knowledge about trees and how they grow.

Who’s hiring for these jobs?

Forest logging managers can work in lumber mills, paper companies, or land developing firms.

What’s the best way to get this job?

With your degree, you can start by getting your foot in the door at a smaller company specializing in forest management. Once you’ve gained some experience there, you can apply for positions with larger companies or even start your own business.

What’s it like to be a forest logging manager?

Conclusion

While many colleges offer forestry as an option, it is important to do your research before choosing your career path.

At the same time, it’s worth looking into the different ways you can make money with a forestry degree. There are areas to learn in forestry that could translate into a side hustle or future career.

We hope this information helps you with your career research.

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Joannah W.
Joannah has been a science publisher with close to 20 years of experience. She wants to help students and researchers stay ahead of the trends and developments in the science community by making science more accessible to everyone.

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