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The beaver (Castor canadensis) is commonplace in many parts of Québec.
Photo: Biodôme de Montréal

Using vasectomy to control beaver population

The beaver, Castor canadensis, is commonplace in many parts of Québec, and can be a real nuisance in populated areas. The objective of this project is to keep subjects in their habitat while limiting their number. Young beavers tend to inhabit inappropriate spaces after leaving the family lodge. Vasectomy is used to sterilize males without interfering with their normal territorial behaviour. One of the goals is also to follow couples over a period of time and see if they stay together despite the absence of offspring.

Raccoon serology and population dynamics 

Since 1993, two populations of raccoons, Procyon lotor, have been studied in the Cap-Saint-Jacques and Île-Bizard nature parks on Montréal’s West Island. The animals are captured live using Havahart traps. They are then vaccinated against rabies and distemper, an identification chip is inserted under their skin and a blood sample is drawn. Every two years, raccoons are captured again and another blood sample is drawn and analyzed. This makes it possible to determine their level of protection against the rabies virus (raccoon variation), which has been present in Québec since 2006.

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