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All About Fallers

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

Faller Responsibilities

  • 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.
  • Work as a member of a team, rotating between chain saw operation and skidder operation.
  • Saw back-cuts, leaving sufficient sound wood to control direction of fall.
  • Assess logs after cutting to ensure that the quality and length are correct.
  • Measure felled trees and cut them into specified log lengths, using chain saws and axes.
  • Tag unsafe trees with high-visibility ribbons.

Qualities of a Faller

These are the skills Fallers say are the most useful in their careers:

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Equipment Maintenance: Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.

  • Arborist
  • Tree Cutter
  • Skidder Operator
  • Tree Topper
  • Groundperson

Is There Job Demand for Fallers?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 7,500 jobs in the United States for Faller. There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Faller. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 800 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Fallers in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Faller are Kentucky, Maryland, and Oregon. Watch out if you plan on working in Georgia, Alaska, or South Carolina. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Do Fallers Make A Lot Of Money?

Fallers make between $27,080 and $78,500 a year.

Salary Ranges for Fallers

Fallers who work in New York, Oregon, or Montana, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Fallers in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $44,320
Alaska $59,680
Arkansas $55,050
California $56,720
Colorado $29,650
Georgia $42,570
Idaho $43,170
Indiana $53,620
Louisiana $39,320
Maryland $41,480
Massachusetts $45,480
Michigan $36,670
Minnesota $45,010
Mississippi $48,700
Missouri $39,910
Montana $65,560
New Hampshire $45,240
New York $63,040
North Carolina $56,500
Ohio $29,130
Oregon $67,560
Pennsylvania $33,170
Tennessee $38,020
Texas $50,220
Vermont $40,810
Virginia $42,120
Washington $66,870
West Virginia $38,620

What Tools & Technology do Fallers Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Fallers:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office
  • ESRI ArcView
  • BCS Woodlands Software The Logger Tracker

How to Become a Faller

What education is needed to be a Faller?

Faller Degree Level

How many years of work experience do I need?

Faller Work Experience

Where Fallers Are Employed

Faller Sectors

The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.

Faller Industries

Those thinking about becoming a Faller might also be interested in the following careers:


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More about our data sources and methodologies.

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