Bellairs Research Institute

Bellairs Research Institute is Canada's only teaching and research facility in the tropics. Located in Holetown, Barbados, Bellairs Research Institute is a McGill University facility which maintains an open-door policy to all researchers with academic interests in tropical terrestrial and marine environments.

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Research opportunities

Bellairs offers access to a world of opportunities. On site, there is a range of marine habitats, including intertidal sand and rock, coral reefs, estuaries and mangroves, algal and seagrass beds, and deep oceanic water close to shore. The Institute provides easy access to other unique marine and terrestrial environments nearby; Barbados is the only non-volcanic island in the Lesser Antilles. Research at Bellairs has broadened from primarily marine science to a wide spectrum of disciplines in the natural and social sciences, such as geology, geography, archaeology, climatology, biology, ecology, horticulture, agriculture, sustainability, and water management.

History and purpose

Bellairs Research Institute was founded and endowed in 1954 by the late Commander Carlyon W. Bellairs to provide a facility through which staff at McGill might develop a scholarly interest in the tropics. It plays host to students and scientists from around the world for field courses, workshops and research projects involving both marine and terrestrial environments. Bellairs also maintains close association with local academic, government, and non-government organizations.

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