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Karine Béland

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Karine Béland, veterinarian and scientific advisor at the Biodôme
Photo: Marco Langlois
Karine Béland, veterinarian and scientific advisor at the Biodôme
  • Karine Béland, veterinarian and scientific advisor at the Biodôme
  • Karine Béland holds a marten in her arms when it wakes up.
  • Karine Béland during a field work.

Field of research and expertise

  • Clinical research aimed at expanding our knowledge in animal health and well-being
  • Involvement in the management of Ville de Montréal urban wildlife

Education

Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine, 2016
Université de Montréal

Studies in zoological medicine
Internship in applied veterinary science (IPSAV), 2017
Postgraduate diploma (DÉS) in veterinary clinical sciences, 2020
Université de Montréal

Master’s in Veterinary Clinical Sciences – Behavioral Medicine (under way)
Université de Montréal

About my work

As a veterinarian and scientific advisor, my work is divided into two primary mandates. The first consists, with my veterinarian colleague, in making sure that the animals housed at the Biodôme remain in good physical and mental health. That aspect takes up roughly half my time.

The second consists in carrying out clinical research having to do with animal health and well-being. In the framework of this second mandate, I also take part, from near or far, in managing urban and suburban wildlife on Montréal Island.

Combining research and animal care

The subjects that appeal to me especially include the medicine and conservation of narwhals, fish, amphibians and reptiles; avian cardiology; the impact of industrial development on wildlife health and behavior; and the management of urban and suburban wildlife.

What do I like most about my work? One day follows another, but no two are ever alike! Whether it’s preparing a research project, doing surgery on a perch, vaccinating a lynx, taking x-rays of a gentoo penguin or examining a lobster, I’m never ever bored, plus I have to be constantly creative.

Why I love research

I love clinical research, because it’s very concrete. As a bonus, every research project gives me the impression of carrying out a small biological investigation, and that I love!

Besides improving our scientific knowledge, research allows for constant improvement in the care offered to the animals that are our responsibility. It also makes possible an invaluable sharing of knowledge with other scientists, in training or established, as well as with the public, thereby fulfilling one of the primary missions for zoological institutions accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).

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