Cara Field, DVM, Ph.D., Dipl. ACZM
Embracing the mixture of aquatic animal health, scientific discovery and sharing what we learn with the global community fuels my hope that, together, we can make positive changes for ocean and human health.
Dr. Cara Field can trace her long history at The Marine Mammal Center back to when she served as an animal care volunteer while attending graduate and veterinary school. Now as Medical Director, Cara oversees the care and health of the Center’s marine mammal patients, collaborates on numerous research projects and directs our Teaching Hospital program.
Cara is a certified Diplomate in the American College of Zoological Medicine, and one of only 30 Diplomates with the specialty of Aquatic Animal Medicine. Each year, Cara mentors the Veterinary Intern and Fellow as well as dozens of residents, students and other professionals who come to the Center to study marine mammal medicine and health. This key aspect of sharing our medical and scientific knowledge is especially meaningful to her.
Cara completed the dual DVM/Ph.D degree program at UC Davis in 2005, where she studied the effects of high pressure on blood platelets from elephant seals, the world’s deepest diving seal. She then worked at Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut for three years as a post-doctoral researcher studying marine mammal brucellosis and was subsequently the Intern Veterinarian there.
Cara’s past work history also includes working in New Orleans as Associate Veterinarian at the Audubon Nature Institute, including caring for hundreds of oiled marine animals during the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill, and working as the Senior Associate Veterinarian at the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, one of the largest aquariums in the world. She moved back to California to work at The Marine Mammal Center in 2014 and has travelled extensively to different parts of the world to teach aquatic animal medicine and health.
Areas of Expertise
- Veterinary Medicine
- Aquatic Animal Health
- Global Impact of Marine Mammal Diseases, including Biotoxins and Cancer
- Effects of Climate Change on Ocean Health
- Marine Mammal Physiology
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Marine Science Careers
Ever wondered how to become a marine mammal veterinarian? Learn what it takes and find out how Dr. Cara Field uses her role as a teacher to help protect our ocean for future generations.