Felling Trees


In Nigeria, the felling or cutting down of trees for timber


production is done in two places: Forest Reserves and Free Areas.

Procedure for Fellinga Tree

1. Free Areas: This is an area that is outside the Forest Reserve

When a timber contractor, or any other person who has big trees

on his farm or land, finds a tree that he wants to cut down to

produce timber, he will call the Forest Guard to come and inspect

the tree. After inspection, the timber contractor will pay some

money called Tariff to the government and a permit or authority

to fell the tree will be issued. The trees which are not big enough

to produce good timbers are not allowed to be cut down. The

amount paid for a tree is based on the commercial importance of the tree.

2. Forest Reserve: In reserves the government marks out an arta

and then allows the trees in that area to be felled. Big companies

dealing with timber usually enjoy these facilities rather than



The timber from the reserves is paid for on an area basis and the

charges vary according to the big trees there. After the best trees

have been cut in the reserves, the remaining ones are given out to

local contractors who need them. The money which they will pay

in this case is called ‘OTV’, i.e. Out Turn Volume. This means that you will pay for the volume of what you take out


Conversion is the process of splitting the log with sawing

machines into commercial or marketable sizes. The two popular

methods of con version are plain sawn’ and ‘quarter sawn.


Plain sawn method (also called through and through’ or tangential method’): This is the method of simply sawing the log

plank after plank. Many operators prefer this method-, because

it is a simple, quick and cheap way to convert logs into planks

suited to various needs.

2. Quarter sawn method: This is the method of conversion along

the rays ot the wood. This method needs more attention than the

plain sawn because the log has to be turned. The planks

produced by this method are more stable and they produce stripe





Logs contain a lot of water and are usually very heavy. The water

may sometimes be as much as half the weight of the wood. The

water in wood is called moisture or sap. When the log is sawn into

planks, they must be dried because wet timber is more exposed to

decay: it is weaker in strength and more liable to warp and split

than dry timber.


Seasoning is the process of reducing the water (moisture)


in wood. The reasons for seasoning or drying wood are


1. It makes wood more stable.

2. It makes wood lighter in weight.

3. It makes wood stronger because the drier the wood, the stronger it becomes (up to a point).

4. It makes wood more durable because fungi andinsects usually attack the starch in the wet sapwood.

5. It makes wood take paints, polishes, etc., more

Updated: January 22, 2020 — 5:46 am

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