Arborists are often called tree surgeons because their business bears a resemblance to how a doctor works on people. In the industry, however, the two labels would never be used interchangeably! Despite their title, tree surgeons do not have the same training or knowledge as certified arborists. The difference will show in the quality of the work.
What Do Tree Surgeons Do?
The problem is that even though they call themselves “surgeons,” tree surgeons require no formal education or certification. The job can involve extensive training and experience working with others in the industry, and even with professional arborists, but it’s not a title towards which one has to work. Anyone can call themselves a tree surgeon!
What Makes An Arborist?
To become a certified arborist, many hours of in-class and apprenticeship training are required. It can be done through the Ontario College of Trades, and the work isn’t easy: the training consists of 5,340 hours of on-the-job work experience and 660 hours of in-school training. After all this, an arborist can do what a tree surgeon does and so much more, working as the real tree doctor.
Who Should I Hire To Work On My Tree?
Tree surgeons can work side-by-side with arborists, but rarely would they call themselves that when actual arborists are on the job.
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A qualified company should have certified arborists to make tough decisions. But before hiring anyone, arborist or tree surgeon, do your research to ensure that any work will be done safely and with your tree in mind!