Jobs at DOC: Emma Erickson, Biodiversity Ranger

Department of Conservation —  17/04/2015

Come behind the scenes and into the jobs, the challenges, the highlights, and the personalities of the people who work at the Department of Conservation (DOC).

Today we profile Emma Erickson, Biodiversity Ranger in Opotiki.

Portrait of Emma Erickson cat the beach.

Portrait at the beach

At work…

Some things I do in my job include:

I started with DOC as a shorebird volunteer and monitored the Matata breeding sites during the 2014-2015 season.

I am now lucky enough to be working for DOC and am involved in the biosecurity efforts on Moutohorā (Whale Island), setting tracking cards and bait stations for rodents and other pests. This allows us to protect the island and its pest-free status.

This helps achieve DOC’s vision by:

The work I am involved in helps achieve DOC’s vision “New Zealand is the greatest living space on Earth” by increasing our knowledge and understanding of our native species. Ongoing monitoring and research allows us to more effectively protect our native flora and fauna.

The best bit about my job is:

Field work is the best bit about my job, I love the outdoors and animals, the bush and our ocean. I also love meeting other like-minded people and learning all about their adventures in the field.

Emma Erickson holds a kiwi at Te Urewera Mainland Island.

Holding a kiwi at Te Urewera

The awesome-est DOC moment I’ve had so far is:

When I got to spend a week in Te Urewera Mainland Island setting DOC200 traps. I held my first ever baby kiwi and will never forget it!

The DOC (or previous DOC) employee that inspires or enthuses me most is:

Peter Livingstone. I have never met anyone with so much knowledge, passion and commitment to our environment. He literally never stops working, even on his days off!

Emma Erickson snorkelling in Tonga.

Snorkelling in Tonga

On a personal note…

The song that always cheers me up is:

‘Bittersweet Symphony’ by The Verve.

My happy place is:

In the ocean.

My best ever holiday was:

A month in Vava’u, Tonga, swimming with humpback whales.

If I wasn’t working at DOC, I’d like to:

Be a professional surfer and get paid to travel to the world’s best pozzies.

My biggest pet peeve is:

Cupboards and doors and drawers being left half open.

Emma Erickson and Toulousesq.

Me and Toulousesq

Deep and meaningful…

My favourite quote is:

Get amongst it!

The best piece of advice I’ve ever been given is:

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.

Emma Erickson at the beach.

Life’a a beach

In work and life I am motivated by:

My family and the family I hope to have in the future.

My conservation advice to New Zealanders is:

Use less, give more.

Emma Erickson enjoying nature.

Enjoying nature

Question of the week…

Which colour best represents your personality, and why?

I think the colour blue best represents my personality. Like me, the colour blue is cool, calm and is associated with the ocean.

One response to Jobs at DOC: Emma Erickson, Biodiversity Ranger


    Hi Emma! I remember you from that week in Te Urewera setting those traps 🙂 Omg and now you work for DOC good on you! 🙂 damn I’m soo jealous haha that’s wicked man 🙂 hope you’re enjoying it 🙂