Forestry consultant

Discussion in 'Whitetail Deer Habitat' started by ekbelt3, Jan 24, 2018.

  1. Osceola

    Osceola

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    Just to give another perspective, I managed my own sale and it worked out great. The conventional advice is to always hire a consultant, but it can be done on your own if you're willing to do your homework.
    It's much like the decision to sell your own house. If you're a little business savvy, you can save yourself a lot of money.
     
    smith34 likes this.
  2. Rasputin

    Rasputin Premium Member

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    Looks like I will have to do it myself just to get it done. I'm happy to pay the consultant if I can get one to actually do something.
     

  3. Big CC

    Big CC

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    Your experience sounds like mine. I have 20 acres of woods and wanted to get some of the larger trees out and open up the canopy. I figured that I would not make much money, but wanted it done for thicker habitat. I left messages with a few consultants over a 2 year span and never heard back. I had a county guy come out and tell me that I needed another 10-15 years to have a worthwhile sale. Finally a friend of mine told me he was having a logger come out to cut some of his trees. I had the guy come and look at mine and he agreed low value, but understood my reasoning. He took about 100 trees and I got some money out of it....at that point I would have almost let them take the trees for free. Good luck.
     
  4. hunter7

    hunter7

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    Rick Lucus is the Conservation District Forester and his office is out of Reed City. Not sure your situation but might even consider the Qualified Forest program.
     
  5. Rasputin

    Rasputin Premium Member

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    I already have 240 acres in the QFP. I think I have a large enough, diverse enough forest to make it worthwhile for someone to want to get involved, I just think they have such a backlog it takes time to get to the top of the list. .
     
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  6. River raider

    River raider

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    Make sure he is registered to write a management plan.
     
  7. TwodogsNate

    TwodogsNate

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    A few things any forestor should provide when you sign with him.

    Aerial map with marked boundaries of the cut is a must.

    Make sure he is bonded and insured. Our club was paid in full before they cut.

    Have something in the contract that says they will repair any damage to your roads! Take before pictures.
     
  8. hunterrep

    hunterrep

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    I know everybody says to hire a consultant, but how do you get one of them to even return a damn phone call let alone go to work for you?
    I'm about done trying to find one that wants to work.
     
    Rasputin likes this.
  9. B.Jarvinen

    B.Jarvinen Premium Member

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    I can't help you there that much. I am probably several years out from taking the State test. You might could try talking up your timber a little - "I think I have a bunch of #1 (Walnut / Black Cherry / Sugar Maple / White Oak)" - whichever of those is likely to be found in your township. Nevertheless, I would suggest you persist. If you haven't met with the Forester from your local Conservation District yet, go ahead and do that for an accurate up-to-date picture of what is standing in your woods, even if you already know that. Because though the CD Forester can't recommend one specific Consultant or Buyer over another, I would expect they could help you figure out which ones would never come to your county at all, with an up-to-date list of who is willing to work locally.

    A lot of consultants do have a permanent client base of land-owners with work scheduled years ahead of time in their management plans.

    I would say the profession is changing some. Here are a couple stories -

    In the south-eastern states, I worked on Forestry projects (planting, pre-commercial TSI) for many years in the winter, including a lot of time on a very large, revenue producing School Forest owned by a University ( >80,000 acres). It needed a full-time year-round staff of 8-9 to manage. And it was the obvious place for the U. in question to send Forestry students to both help with all the work, and get those students practical experience for the future. A total win-win all the way around. About 15 years ago, the professional staff there had to approach the University and tell them not to send any more students out there to work, because none of them wanted to put their boots on the ground. "They all just want to sit in the office and edit the GIS."

    Around 5 years ago, I was hired by a young, freshly minted independent Consultant just out of MSU to do a little planting project on a property where he had written the brand new Management Plan. It was in south-central Michigan, but I can't recommend this kid to anyone, for a simple reason. Regarding a recently harvested area we were standing in at the time, I casually asked him if the sale had a lot of bids, as I wasn't all that familiar with mill locations in that area (Kent Co.). His response was a stunner: "Oh no, I don't do timber sales, those are too much work."
     
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  10. LTH

    LTH

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    How long does it take for people to become a registered forester? What is the pay range for something like this? Supply vs. demand seems there would be a greater calling. I know I wish I had known of such professions when I was younger.
     
  11. Forest Meister

    Forest Meister

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    Unfortunately I have seen this coming down the pike for a long, long time. Fewer and fewer seem to want to be "Dirt Foresters" any more. Deer flies, paint, black flies, rain, mud, snow, mosquitoes, frostbite, West Nile Virus, Lyme Disease, and even a fear of snakes and wild animals all conspire to dissuade many from actually going into the business. It doesn't help that forestry schools are turning out only a small percentage of the graduates they did back in the day nor does it help that the 800 pound gorillas in the room, the USFS and various State Forestry Departments, seem to be picking up a lot of graduates because the pay and bennies are often better.

    There still are those who want to be out there in the private sector though, but when some see how the other half lives it's tough to keep them down on the farm, so to speak. One young fellow who I mentored and who I consider a friend wanted to make it in the private sector but he had a little disagreement with his boss when the boss wanted him to conduct some questionable activities. Since they could not agree, they parted company. The first job the young fellow found was in Texas sitting behind a desk in a climate controlled office using his computer skills in a completely different field. He would like to get back into forestry and move closer to home. He is also willing to take a pay cut from what he is presently making but the offers he has had so far do not seem to be in the ballpark.

    Not returning calls or emails is inexcusable, absolutely inexcusable, but it seems to happen a lot in every field: A friend ran an electrical supply store so I called him to ask for recommendations as to who might want to do a one day indoor wiring job (in winter). The two names he gave never returned my calls and believe it or not only a couple days later one electrician was back in his store complaining that he didn't have any work. Another time I had no water so called a local plumber. I explained to the secretary my desperation because we had a new baby in the house. After calling a few times I went elsewhere and finally found an out of town plumber, an old timer, who came right out. A week after finding someone the original fellow I called showed up at my door, without even calling first. Then there was the furnace guy......and the garage door guy both of which did not return calls. Recently it was the water softener guy but he finally did call back over a week after making my initial contact with the office person and several days after I left another message on the voice mail.

    Sorry for the rant but my greatest pet peeve is probably "professionals" without the common courtesy to at least return a call to say they are either not interested or are too busy to help out any time soon.

    Now, getting back to foresters. I may just have to relocate for a few days at a time! FM
     
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  12. B.Jarvinen

    B.Jarvinen Premium Member

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    The Community College out in Ironwood started up a new, 2 year Associate's Degree program in Forestry, to help meet demand for people qualified to mark timber. 2 year programs are fairly rare around the country otherwise. In Michigan, MSU and MTU are the two main Forestry Departments offering 4 year degrees.
     
  13. Setter

    Setter

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    It's about bringing in more money for another two years of tuition and keeping Professors on the payroll.
     
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  14. Pinefarm2015

    Pinefarm2015

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    Yup. Without a doubt Travis Miller. He’s done 3 of my timber jobs. He’s a hunter who manages for hunting.

    231-342-3819
    Tell him Bob Fisher sent ya!

    Travis can also do a forest plan for anyone doing the Qualified Forest tax break program.