Forester work as an American?

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doctorwormwood
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Forester work as an American?

Post by doctorwormwood » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:52 am

Hello! I am an American, and have been interested in living in Chile for a while now. I haven't yet looked into learning Spanish at a great length yet so I still need to work on that.

Anyways, I am interested in becoming forester, and I was wondering how I could find work as a forester in Chile when the time comes? I would like as much information as possible, advice ect. Is there a more realistic choice if forestry isn't? Either way, I would like some advice and pointers on making this work out. Sorry if this isn't the right page to post this.

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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by dmwbmw2 » Tue Apr 17, 2018 6:09 am

If you have a university degree with at least 5 to 10 years of related experience and a working knowledge of Spanish then you would have a reasonably good chance of finding work.

Otherwise, very difficult .

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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by admin » Tue Apr 17, 2018 6:37 am

Yea forestery engineirs in chile are a dime a dozen, and most i have met are not really working in anything related to forest.
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David_Bro
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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by David_Bro » Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:59 pm

Forestry in Chile is very specialized in a work situation where it pays-----that is to say because of the geology, soils and weather by region it can all be very different than more traditional areas of the world in forestry. Most everything I learned in regard to trees was from old timers who in turn learned it from old timers. The forestry engineers certainly know a certain amount but its like kindergarten compared to what the old timers know----takes years to know what is going on and I mean years working in Chile----of course there are the pulp mills and Arauco that makes all the mdf products and that is about it. Chile does not export quality hardwoods in any great quantity anymore so that industry is dead and for three reasons-----in addition to that there are no longer any freelance mills or drying facilities---1) The quality of timber now is not very good because its all new growth as all sub-Andean old growth forests have been long gone for some time.(There are good quality hardwoods in the mid-Andes but because of location, roads, snow and snow melt, its not easy to get logs out)--- 2) Because the new growth is not good of quality, Chile does not produce comparative veneer sheet good products or any veneer at all----thats not to say that there is not any but its mostly for the domestic market as well pan latin america (mostly eucalyptus). ------3) CONAF, the Chilean National Forest Agency, has become very strict on cutting of old growth trees in the sub and mid-Andean region so it would be very difficult to have a supply to feed the market. Most if not all tracts are small old school family owned parcels ( 100 to 1200 hectares) because of the cutting schedule CONAF imparts. I have been in Chile on and off since 84' and have only seen one small old growth sub-Andean tract of about 11 hectars----btw, it was amazing and COMPLETELY different than new growth trees parcels. (Got lost walking in within about 50 meters and took me 6 hours to find my out) If its your plan, I would get a degree in lumber grading in addition to forestry-----this would give you an angle for getting work in a mill possibly but as someone else said, to get any traction in Chile you would need 10 years of solid forestry and mill experience in the US or Canada. Maybe the best way would be to do it yourself by buying your own land and cutting yourself but at the smaller levels its quite an experience to work timber in Chile in regards to getting things done, workers and the sale. In Chile that has been going on for maybe 10 years and is very regional. In the US now there is a market for salvaged and reclaimed wood----so buying old barns, houses and buildings, dismantling them but again its a lot of ground work in Chile to find salvage, purchase it, dismantle and ship it----besides the reclaim market has been going several years now and would most likely be in decline by the time you get anything to market. And really to pull the salvage angle off you'd need 10 years of Chilean culture living and breathing the way things work. Not to say forestry can't be done for you but, do your research and plan very well because nothing in Chile is easy.

doctorwormwood
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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by doctorwormwood » Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:40 pm

David_Bro wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:59 pm
Forestry in Chile is very specialized in a work situation where it pays-----that is to say because of the geology, soils and weather by region it can all be very different than more traditional areas of the world in forestry. Most everything I learned in regard to trees was from old timers who in turn learned it from old timers. The forestry engineers certainly know a certain amount but its like kindergarten compared to what the old timers know----takes years to know what is going on and I mean years working in Chile----of course there are the pulp mills and Arauco that makes all the mdf products and that is about it. Chile does not export quality hardwoods in any great quantity anymore so that industry is dead and for three reasons-----in addition to that there are no longer any freelance mills or drying facilities---1) The quality of timber now is not very good because its all new growth as all sub-Andean old growth forests have been long gone for some time.(There are good quality hardwoods in the mid-Andes but because of location, roads, snow and snow melt, its not easy to get logs out)--- 2) Because the new growth is not good of quality, Chile does not produce comparative veneer sheet good products or any veneer at all----thats not to say that there is not any but its mostly for the domestic market as well pan latin america (mostly eucalyptus). ------3) CONAF, the Chilean National Forest Agency, has become very strict on cutting of old growth trees in the sub and mid-Andean region so it would be very difficult to have a supply to feed the market. Most if not all tracts are small old school family owned parcels ( 100 to 1200 hectares) because of the cutting schedule CONAF imparts. I have been in Chile on and off since 84' and have only seen one small old growth sub-Andean tract of about 11 hectars----btw, it was amazing and COMPLETELY different than new growth trees parcels. (Got lost walking in within about 50 meters and took me 6 hours to find my out) If its your plan, I would get a degree in lumber grading in addition to forestry-----this would give you an angle for getting work in a mill possibly but as someone else said, to get any traction in Chile you would need 10 years of solid forestry and mill experience in the US or Canada. Maybe the best way would be to do it yourself by buying your own land and cutting yourself but at the smaller levels its quite an experience to work timber in Chile in regards to getting things done, workers and the sale. In Chile that has been going on for maybe 10 years and is very regional. In the US now there is a market for salvaged and reclaimed wood----so buying old barns, houses and buildings, dismantling them but again its a lot of ground work in Chile to find salvage, purchase it, dismantle and ship it----besides the reclaim market has been going several years now and would most likely be in decline by the time you get anything to market. And really to pull the salvage angle off you'd need 10 years of Chilean culture living and breathing the way things work. Not to say forestry can't be done for you but, do your research and plan very well because nothing in Chile is easy.
Everything mentioned so far is helpful, thank you all. Unfortunately, I was thinking of moving to Chile as soon as possible, so when I get a degree in forestry I would seek work in Chile, but as I expected it seems hard. Is there a similar career path that would be easier to aim for? Also, where can I look to see what skills are needed in Chile?

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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by passport » Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:46 pm

Instead forests in Switzerland are micro-managed by the government, including private land. Maybe move there?

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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by doctorwormwood » Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:17 am

passport wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:46 pm
Instead forests in Switzerland are micro-managed by the government, including private land. Maybe move there?
Switzerland is one of the more expensive countries in the world.

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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by David_Bro » Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:30 am

There has been, traditionally, across the Chile Forum a load of foreigners wishing to come to Chile for a variety of reasons----to start with many think that because they come from a developed country work will be easily consigned for no other reason that one is coming from outside Chile----not saying its you but its a common mis-conception and so far from the reality of Chile is that mostly, and I say in 99.99% of the cases, those people leave Chile completely wrecked---and that is to say financially, emotionally and culturally----there are dozens if not hundreds and probably more start up stories like yours that vary in degree for what they think they are prepared for in Chile----some take the advice well and some do not but its something I could bet on and make a lot of money for who might be a likely candidate that will make it or not----obviously there are people that make it but its quite a study on what conditions they arrive in Chile that prepare them to stay-----its got to be (overwhelmingly in my opinion)----a family connection, a very large bank account and language, if not cultural skills to bring with them from another latin country----there is persistence and skill but its something Chile will completely change your definition of that its almost better to come with out it----Chile is not a live and live country like many other ex-pat destinations---its just not and no goodwill and smiles will overtake what you think you can get away with. Not meaning to discourage you but just saying how it is-----My recommendation would be to give yourself a year in country if not three to live and see how it is----by all means keep our goal in mind but live the culture and see what it is to live in Chile-----in all this keep an out for yourself so you don't get stuck----when I say that I mean keep back some cash so you can get your self out and not be held captive and as well you can land back in the US with options----to give you an idea, in my opinion and experience it would be an absolute minimum of 200,000 US dollars to have so that you have low ball maximum of options for anything you want to do in Chile.

###

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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by at46 » Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:37 pm

David_Bro wrote:
Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:30 am
I could bet on and make a lot of money for who might be a likely candidate that will make it or not----
I think most of the old-timers on this forum are here just to play that betting game :)

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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by admin » Wed Apr 18, 2018 2:10 pm

I quit betting on who is going to make it and who is not going to make it in chile years ago.

I charge them all the same rate.
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Re: Forester work as an American?

Post by passport » Wed Apr 18, 2018 3:04 pm

doctorwormwood wrote:
Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:17 am
passport wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:46 pm
Instead forests in Switzerland are micro-managed by the government, including private land. Maybe move there?
Switzerland is one of the more expensive countries in the world.
Yes Switzerland is expensive but pay and benefits are greater. Forestry is taken very seriously, even for tiny plots of land. Your cannabis practice might find more support. And:
You might be very unpleasantly surprised to find out how expensive it is to live in Chile. There is an entire thread entitled "Chile is Expensive!" Seek and ye shall find.

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