Examining the human dimensions of conservation science continues to generate attention, with a move towards an interdisciplinary agenda that incorporates both the natural and social sciences, and recognition of the importance of understanding human involvement in biodiversity and ecological matters. However, one line of enquiry has been largely neglected: the job perceptions of front-line conservation area rangers. Examining intrinsic and extrinsic motivational factors can shed light on job stress and job satisfaction, recruitment, productivity, and retention and turnover. Furthermore, little is known about potential intergenerational linkages within the ranger profession, which is a significant gap, given the potential role of the family in pre-employment socialization and career choice. Drawing from surveys of 530 rangers working in 39 conservation areas in 11 Asian countries, we found variation amongst intrinsically motivated, extrinsically motivated, and mixed-motivated rangers in terms of a desire to see their children become rangers. Extrinsically motivated rangers were most likely to want their children to enter the profession, and intrinsically motivated rangers expressed significant concern about the inadequacy of the work environment. Implications for both conservation and criminal justice policy and research are discussed.