snow goose

Northern Lexicon | Snow goose

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Did you know? The Greater Snow Goose breeds in Canada's eastern High Arctic, with the largest nesting colony on Bylot Island, Nunavut. During migration, the entire population of this species makes a stopover in the marshes and farmlands of southern Quebec.

About Marie-Christine Lafrenière

Status: PhD student (beginning of 4th year)
Supervisor: Marc Amyot
Co-supervision: Jean-François Lapierre
Department: biology
Research interests: ecotoxicology, freshwater ecology, biogeochemistry, environmental chemistry
Thesis topic: Fate of rare (earth) metals in the St. Lawrence River


Marie-Christine Lafrenière, who holds a Bachelor's degree in Biology (UdeM 2015-2018), is currently a PhD student in Biology at the Université de Montréal. Specifically, she is studying ecotoxicology, freshwater ecology and biogeochemistry. Her doctoral research aims to understand the fate of rare earth metals, metals that occur naturally in Canadian soils and are used in the design of green or digital technologies, in the water, sediments and organisms of the St. Lawrence River. Originally from the north shore of Lake St. Pierre and a true enthusiast of the Quebec river landscape, she spent several summers navigating the river and its tributaries to collect her samples and develop an integrated understanding of the system.

Also interested in scientific communication, she has organized several conferences for academic audiences and several for the general public (Women and Science, Journey of a Biologist, Demystifying the St. Lawrence, The Paradox of the Energy Transition). She has also led thematic workshops on water for students as part of a university group and to the general public as part of the Eureka! festival. Her commentaries on current events and the environment can be read alongside those of law students in the newspaper Le Pigeon Dissident. In addition, Marie-Christine defines herself as a biologist-artist and develops her artistic vision in conjunction with her scientific interests in her paintings, in her graphic design commissions, notably in computer graphics for Institut Nordique du Québec, or in the creation of a comic book to illustrate her own research. 

Currently, she shares the microphone with her friend Stéphanie, hosting the Les Lucioles podcast about undergraduate research in biology. When she's not writing her thesis or developing the podcast, you can find her outdoors, reading a feminist novel, writing a poem, or researching a new vegan recipe.  


The "Northern Lexicon" is a communication project for the general public aimed at broadening our general knowledge the North.

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