A future in conservation and Alabamas public lands

A.Maxwell

New member
Joined
Jun 2, 2016
Messages
7
Location
Helena, Alabama
So i am currently at a community college here in Alabama completing all my core classes like biology and math, and this time next year ill be moving down to Auburn to get my degree in forestry. After talking to a lot of people and doing a lot of reading i do believe that the forestry major is for me. I dont want to go work for a paper mill or something, maybe somewhere down the road ill start a business or something. Ill probably end up at a logging/hunting land management company like Westervelt. But i want to do things for conservation as a whole, i guess what im trying to get at is how could i use my future profession for the greater good of conservation as a whole, whether it be starting a specific kind f business or just getting involved politically on important issues by going to committee hearings and similar things. Im sure theres a few foresters on here, and id really like some advice on what to expect in the field, advice from someone who has been there and done that is priceless! Im really worried about the future of conservation in Alabama, we got some real crooked politicians and our public lands are constantly getting yanked out from under us, this is the second year in a row we have lost more than 10,000 acres of public land (nearly all of our "public land" is actually private land leased by the state, the state dosent keep up the land, especially the roads on the WMA i hunt, and when the contract runs out the landowner dosent renew the lease with the state). I dont know if the questions i asked sound dumb or what but any help will be greatly appreciated!
 

Foxtrot1

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 2, 2011
Messages
597
Location
Jacksonville, Alabama
I applaud your motivations for getting into forestry. Conservation and ecosystem restoration are strong niches in the forestry profession. Possibilities include working for govt agencies (USFS, DoD, BLM,USFWS, etc...), conservation organizations (nature conservancy, etc..), or consulting with landowners. The reality is that most private forestry management actions are driven by $$$. Working for a govt agency frees you from those constraints but comes with a mountain of bs.

I graduated from AU with a degree in forestry in 02. If I had it to do over, I would look at getting a BS in wildlife and then a masters of forestry. As a RF and a certified wildlife biologists more doors would be open to you. Also look at some NRCS position announcements and make sure you pick up enough soils classes to qualify for them.

Overall positions in conservation fairly tough to come by. Be flexible, willing to relocate, and qualified for as many positions as you can.

Good luck
 

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