Tree Marking Program

Visit the Ontario Tree Marker website to learn about how you can become trained as a tree marker.

About Tree Markers

Tree markers help ensure the sustainability of Ontario’s public and private woodlands by making ‘cut and leave’ decisions for individual trees. The trees are evaluated based on their:

  • growth, health and product potential
  • ability to provide seed
  • wildlife benefits

The management objectives for particular woodlands are also considered.

About The Course

The Ontario Tree Marking Course is a 4-day course delivered by Forests Ontario and the Canadian Institute of Forestry covering the forest management systems used in Ontario. It involves field visits and exercises with classroom lectures followed by an optional 1 day of written and field examinations for those that wish to receive a certificate.

Topics include:

  • stand analysis
  • tree classification
  • hardwood tree evaluation and marking
  • pine shelterwood marking
  • habitat values (e.g, nesting cavities) and biodiversity consideration in hardwood and pine forests
  • tree marking prescriptions, which are a series of actions taken to meet forest management objectives
  • marking crew organization
  • plantation marking
  • protecting Indigenous values

To receive a Level 1 tree marking certificate, you must successfully pass a written exam and 3 field exams. After gaining some field experience, you must select and pay a Level 2 tree marker to do an operational field audit on your marking

Course Description:

Level 1 Course: This course is mandatory for all tree markers on Crown land in Ontario. Experience with forestry terminology, tools, species and silvicultural operations would be an asset. This course is a prerequisite for the Level 2 Auditor course.

Level 2 Course: This course is recommended for anyone who is auditing tree marking on Crown land in Ontario.

Refresher Course: Refresher courses are mandatory every 5 years for certified tree markers to maintain active status. You may, however, take a refresher anytime prior to the 5-year expiry date.


To assist your learning and better prepare you for the Level 1 course, we have created various e-learning modules that serve as a primer or refresher to meet the learning objectives of the Level 1 Tree Marking Course.

Upcoming Courses

Level 1

October 21-25, 2024 – Huntsville, ON

Level 2

October 1-3, 2024 in Chalk River, ON


May 22-23, 2024 – Huntsville, ON

Visit the Tree Marking website for more information.

**The health and safety of participants and instructors is our top priority. Health and safety measures for COVID-19 will be properly followed for all courses. All course dates are subject to change or cancellation pending COVID-19 restrictions.**

Course Fees

  • Level 1 course: $2000
  • Level 1 exams: $500
  • Level 1 field audit fee is set by each Level 2 tree marker independently
  • Level 2 course and exams: $1500
  • Refresher course: $500

How To Register

To get on the waiting list, register online

Courses are filled on a first come, first served basis.

If you have any questions about registrations and upcoming courses, please contact the Canadian Institute of Forestry at 1-705-744-1715 ext. 609 or submit your request by email.

Students who have already completed training may contact Forests Ontario with their questions and concerns at 1-416-646-1193 (or 1-877-646-1193) ext. 235, or submit a request by email.