Invasive Species Technician

Mohonk Preserve

New Paltz, New York

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details 20.00/hr
Deadline Apr 19, 2024
Required Experience 0 - 1 years

About Mohonk Preserve:

Located in the beautiful Hudson River Valley, Mohonk Preserve is New York’s largest nonprofit nature preserve. Our mission is to protect the Northern Shawangunk ridge and inspire people to care for, enjoy, and explore the natural world. We manage over 8,000 acres of mountain cliffs, forests, fields, and streams through four integrated programs – Conservation, Education, Stewardship, and Visitor Experience – and welcome over 300,000 members and visitors each year who come to hike, run, rock climb, boulder, bike, cross-country ski, snowshoe and enjoy and experience nature.

Based in a vibrant university community, Mohonk Preserve, “Home of the Gunks,” offers a great working environment in one of New York’s greenest counties, with all-season recreation, access to Preserve lands, a dynamic, committed team of conservation professionals and long legacy of conducting ecological research and environmental education. The Preserve is also the home of one of America’s premier rock-climbing destinations.

Equal Opportunity Employer:

Mohonk Preserve is an Equal Opportunity Employer dedicated to creating an inclusive culture where employees from diverse backgrounds can thrive and support our mission. Successful candidates will be equity-minded and committed to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Justice (DEIJ). Mohonk Preserve encourages applications from women, minorities and/or other underrepresented groups.

Position Overview:

Mohonk Preserve has received a grant from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Invasive Species Grant Program in support of a project to implement early detection, rapid response, and controls for Spotted lanternfly (SLF) and Ailanthus altissima (Tree-of-Heaven). As a member of the Conservation Science team within the Conservation & Community Education Department, the Invasive Species Technician will primarily assist with grant project activities include detection, mapping, monitoring, and destruction of Ailanthus and SLF egg masses, nymphs, and adults.

Secondary duties include assisting with our Invasive Species Program which entails engaging with community science volunteers in field activities and increasing public awareness of SLF and Ailanthus through event programming, media communications, and new signage at our trailheads.

The Technician will also be responsible for entering and managing the collected data.

The position is supervised by the Forester and requires working closely with other department and Mohonk Preserve staff. This hourly, grant-funded position is primarily field based and runs for approximately 30 weeks, May-November 2024, for a maximum of 29 hours per week. Potential opportunity for continued part-time work in 2025.


$20.00/hour; housing available upon request 

Essential Functions:

  • Comprehensive hiking surveys for SLF activity
  • Installation and maintenance of SLF traps
  • Forest stand hiking surveys to map areas of Ailanthus infestation
  • Forest vegetation surveying (including species identification as well as data collection of plant heights/percent cover, tree dbh, canopy cover, deer-browse presence, and habitat quality)
  • Assisting the Forester with herbicide application
  • Manual removal of invasives using tools and equipment like shovels, hatchets, brush cutters, pullerbears, etc.
  • Using iMapInvasives to track observations
  • Record, manage, enter, and perform quality checks on scientific data.
  • Assisting the Community Science Coordinator with volunteer engagement and activity
  • Perform other related duties to support department and Preserve as assigned by the Forester.

Desired Skills and Experience:

At Mohonk Preserve, our priority is finding the best candidate for the job. We encourage you to apply even if you do not meet all the qualifications or have a less traditional background.

  • Bachelor’s degree in Biology, Forestry, Ecology, or related field OR equivalent combination of education and experience
  • Experience conducting fieldwork required
  • Experience identifying Northeastern vegetation is preferred, or the ability and desire to learn (training is provided)
  • Experience navigating off-trail using GPS coordinates (training is provided)
  • Capable (and enthusiastic!) to occasionally walk several miles in a given day carrying a backpack over uneven terrain in potentially adverse field conditions (biting insects, rain, heat, humidity, etc.)
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail with both field work and managing data.
  • Proficient computer skills - Microsoft Office 365 applications, remote work platforms (e.g., Teams, Zoom).
  • Have a commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice to ensure that all people are respected and welcomed at the Mohonk Preserve. This includes participating in ongoing education and other work the organization undertakes to develop and incorporate these principles.
  • Must be able to work independently and interact professionally with a variety of Preserve stakeholders.
  • Ability and willingness to work irregular hours, including early mornings and possibly some weekends.
  • Must have a valid driver’s license.

Bonus skills

  • Coursework related to forestry, dendrology, field botany, or plant taxonomy
  • Experience with handling and/or applying herbicides
  • Experience using ArcGIS and digital mapping tools
  • Experience identifying and managing invasive plants in natural areas
  • Experience with data management and analysis
  • Bi-lingual

Physical Demands:

  • Frequently uses a computer keyboard, reads, writes.
  • Frequently works outdoors.
  • Requires standing, walking, hiking, stooping, bending, kneeling, crouching, carrying equipment, sometimes for an extended period of time.
  • Occasional events indoors or outdoors outside standard office hours and in other locations around the Preserve

This job announcement is not intended to represent a complete, comprehensive list of all duties and responsibilities that may be required in this position. There may be unplanned activities and other duties assigned.


Mohonk Preserve’s main offices are located at our Visitor Center in Gardiner, NY. This position will be based out of the Preserve’s Daniel Smiley Research Center (DSRC) on the grounds of the Mohonk Mountain House resort. Mohonk Preserve offers hybrid work schedules at this time – coordinated with their supervisor and depending on the job, staff may be able to split time working remotely, as well as in the office and in-person on the land. Generally standard working hours, with some flexibility, to be coordinated with supervisor.

Mohonk Preserve is a smoke-free campus.


  • Direct Payroll Deposit
  • Mohonk Preserve membership for duration of position.
  • Access to lands and some activities of Mohonk Mountain House resort

Eligibility for certain benefits is dependent upon a variety of factors including employment status.


Applications accepted via e-mail only. Please submit as a single PDF: cover letter, resume, and names and contact information for 3 professional references by 5PM EST April 19th, 2024 to: research@mohonkpreserve.org

Include “Invasive Species Technician” in email subject line.

The anticipated start date of this position is May 6th, 2024; start date somewhat flexible.

No phone calls please

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category Botany , Restoration
Tags GIS