New Zealand has an estimated 1.79 million hectares planted in production forests. Silviculture workers improve tree growth for sustainability and economic benefit.

Careers information

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What does it involve?

Forest managers plan and manage whole forests. They might work for the forest owner or a specialist forest management company. Forestry scientists research forest growth, wood processing, environmental issues and different types of trees and their uses. Forest Engineers plan and manage forest development and lead the development and introduction of new technologies and prototype equipment.

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Typical day

Typically, an 8 to 9-hour day; sometimes working long hours or weekends on projects. Most of the work is done in laboratories and offices with many other people including researchers, lab technicians, forestry companies, foresters, engineers and equipment suppliers and some work is carrying out research in the forests. You’ll need good communication skills, attention to detail and the ability to learn and understand a great deal of knowledge.

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How much could I earn?

  • 1 - 2 years experience

    $55k- $85k

  • 5 years experience

    $80k- $135k

Career pathway

SchoolEntry level jobsAdvancing jobsSenior jobs
  • Tertiary Entrance Qualifications in:
  • Maths
  • English
  • Sciences (Biology, Chemistry, Physics)
  • Forestry Scientist
  • Forest Engineer
  • Senior Scientist or Engineer
  • Lead Researcher
  • General Manager
  • CEO
  • Additional Senior Leadership Roles
Unit/Achievement standards in schoolsDegreeHigher learningHigher learning