SOC: 45-4021.00


Use axes or chainsaws to fell trees using knowledge of tree characteristics and cutting techniques to control direction of fall and minimize tree damage.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
8,200 employed

Projected (2024):
6,800 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

Alternate Titles:

  • All-Round Logger
  • Arborist
  • Arborist Climber
  • Arborist Representative
  • Axman
  • Bucker
  • Chain Saw Operator
  • Choker Setter
  • Cross Cut Sawyer
  • Cutter Operator
  • Dozer Operator
  • Feller Buncher Operator
  • Feller Operator
  • Grapple Crew Leader
  • Hewer
  • High Climber
  • Hook Tender
  • Logger
  • Lumberjack
  • Lumberman
  • Paper Wood Cutter
  • Pulpwood Cutter
  • Sawyer
  • Skidder Operator
  • Timber Cutter
  • Timber Faller
  • Timber Feller
  • Tree Cutter
  • Tree Faller
  • Tree Feller
  • Tree Topper
  • Utility Arborist

  • Job Zone One: Little or No Preparation Needed


    Little or no previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, a person can become a waiter or waitress even if he/she has never worked before.


    Some of these occupations may require a high school diploma or GED certificate.

    Job Training:

    Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few days to a few months of training. Usually, an experienced worker could show you how to do the job.

    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Operations Analysis
  • Equipment Selection
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Equipment Maintenance
  • Troubleshooting
  • Repairing
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Economics and Accounting
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Production and Processing
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Biology
  • Geography
  • Education and Training
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • Stop saw engines, pull cutting bars from cuts, and run to safety as tree falls.
  • Appraise trees for certain characteristics, such as twist, rot, and heavy limb growth, and gauge amount and direction of lean, to determine how to control the direction of a tree's fall with the least damage.
  • Saw back-cuts, leaving sufficient sound wood to control direction of fall.
  • Clear brush from work areas and escape routes, and cut saplings and other trees from direction of falls, using axes, chainsaws, or bulldozers.
  • Measure felled trees and cut them into specified log lengths, using chain saws and axes.
  • Assess logs after cutting to ensure that the quality and length are correct.
  • Determine position, direction, and depth of cuts to be made, and placement of wedges or jacks.
  • Control the direction of a tree's fall by scoring cutting lines with axes, sawing undercuts along scored lines with chainsaws, knocking slabs from cuts with single-bit axes, and driving wedges.
  • Trim off the tops and limbs of trees, using chainsaws, delimbers, or axes.
  • Select trees to be cut down, assessing factors such as site, terrain, and weather conditions before beginning work.
  • Maintain and repair chainsaws and other equipment, cleaning, oiling, and greasing equipment, and sharpening equipment properly.
  • Insert jacks or drive wedges behind saws to prevent binding of saws and to start trees falling.
  • Tag unsafe trees with high-visibility ribbons.
  • Secure steel cables or chains to logs for dragging by tractors or for pulling by cable yarding systems.
  • Load logs or wood onto trucks, trailers, or railroad cars, by hand or using loaders or winches.
  • Mark logs for identification.
  • Work as a member of a team, rotating between chain saw operation and skidder operation.
  • Place supporting limbs or poles under felled trees to avoid splitting undersides, and to prevent logs from rolling.
  • Split logs, using axes, wedges, and mauls, and stack wood in ricks or cord lots.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • All terrain vehicles ATV
  • Auger bits
  • Boom boats
  • Caulk boots
  • Chain flail delimbers
  • Chain saw chaps
  • Chain saws
  • Climbing belts
  • Combi cans
  • Debarking tools
  • Diameter tape measures
  • Digital tachometers
  • Emergency first aid kits
  • Feller bunchers
  • Felling axes
  • Felling wedges
  • File sharpeners
  • Flat files
  • Forestry helicopters
  • Forwarder cranes
  • Frequency modulation FM two way radios
  • Gas cans
  • Global positioning system GPS receivers
  • Grapple yarders
  • Guylines
  • Hand winches
  • Haulback lines
  • Hydraulic jacks
  • Impact resonance devices
  • Knuckleboom loaders
  • Laptop computers
  • Log skidders
  • Logging boats
  • Logging tractors
  • Logging trucks
  • Mechanical tree harvesters
  • Personal computers
  • Pocket calculators
  • Portable dry chemical fire extinguishers
  • Protective ear muffs
  • Protective hard hats
  • Protective safety glasses
  • Pullthrough delimbers
  • Remote detonation systems
  • Resistographs
  • Round files
  • Rubber tire skidders
  • Screnches
  • Self-loading log transporters
  • Sharpening jigs
  • Skidding lines
  • Skylines
  • Snow shovels
  • Sonic devices
  • Strawlines
  • Stroke delimbers
  • Tablet computers
  • Timber tongs
  • Tower yarders
  • Tree climbing spikes
  • Tuning screwdrivers
  • Warning whistles
  • Wide track bulldozers
  • Wood chippers
  • Assisi Software Assisi Compiler
  • Assisi Software Assisi Inventory
  • Assisi Software Assisi Manager
  • Assisi Software Assisi Resource
  • BCS Woodlands Software The Logger Tracker
  • BCS Woodlands Software Woodlands Tracker
  • ESRI ArcView
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office software

  • farming fishing and forestry

    industry stats

    SOC: 45-0000

    Total Employed: 454,230

    Average Annual Salary: $26,360