Mountain fauna

A.Y. 2019/2020
Overall hours
AGR/19 VET/01
Learning objectives
The aims are to provide:
- basics of vertebrate biology and an introduction to the structural organization and physiological mechanisms of domestic and alpine wild mammals.
- a framework of knowledge of the role and of the features of animal farming systems in the light of rural development and of a wise stewardship of the mountain territory
Expected learning outcomes
To possess basic acquaintance and specific knowledge of structure and function of domestic animals, with emphasis on physiological systems of importance to animal nutrition and animal production.
To have:
- ability of comparing the anatomy and the physiology of different mammals,
- skills in biological and technical language necessary to describe physiological processes,
- specific expertise on animal farming techniques especially as far as pastoralism and rangelands systems are concerned,
- ability to recognise the traits of animal farming and pastoralism resources and their relationships with local food systems, natural and tourist resources in the context of protection and valorization projects
Course syllabus and organization

Unique edition

Lesson period
First semester
Anatomy and physiology of domestic animals
Course syllabus
Basics of animal tissues (types and functions of epithelial, connective, muscular and nervous tissues). Locomotor apparatus: Structure and physiology of bone. Anatomy and physiology of the muscle cell. Circulatory apparatus: Anatomy: heart, capillaries, arteries and veins. Physiology: myocardium, cardiac cycle, regulation of the cardiovascular functions. Blood cell. Plasma and serum. Haematopoiesis, haemostasis and coagulation. Lymph and lymphatic vessels. Respiratory Apparatus: Anatomy: airways, lungs, and pleura. Physiology: respiratory cycle, transport of gases, nervous control of breathing. Digestive apparatus: Anatomy: oral cavity, salivary glands, esophagus, stomach in monogastric and in ruminant animals, intestine, pancreas and liver. Physiology: mastication, salivary secretion, swallowing, stomach and prestomach muscular activity, ruminal fermentations, gastric digestion, pancreatic and enteric digestion, bile composition and functions, gastro-enteric hormones, enteric fermentation, enteric motility, absorption. Urinary Apparatus: Anatomy: kidney, ureters, bladder and urethra, renal circulation. Physiology: filtration to glomerular, reabsorption and secretion, endocrine regulation, renal hormones, water-salt steady state, composition of the urine. Female reproductive apparatus: Anatomy: ovary, oviduct and uterus. Physiology: oogenesis, ovarian cycle, ovarian and hypothalamic hormones, pregnancy and delivery. Male reproductive apparatus: Anatomy: testis, excretory genital ducts, accessory genital glands. Physiology: spermatogenesis, male sexual hormones, function of the annexed glands. Biology of the mammary gland: morphology of the breast, endocrine signals in lactopoiesis, mammary secretion, colostrum and milk, endocrinology of the lactation. Comparative anatomy, physiology and habitat of mountain wild vertebrates.
Mountain animal farming
Course syllabus
1. Mountain and pastoral livestock systems: specificity, classification, Structural aspects of farms in the mountains, species of animals bred in the mountains, The role of grazing livestock systems and in agriculture and rural development in the mountains. 2. The traditional use of plant resources: Alpine migration, transhumance, other forms of utilization of mountain pasture resources. Technical and organizational aspects of the current management of alpine farms (transport, roads, milking, cheese-making, grazing management). Interaction between livestock and wildlife in agro-forestry-pastoral environments 3. Grazing techniques and their application in various environments; Parameters for evaluating the effectiveness of pasture for food and resource conservation, overgrazing, undergrazing and vegetation evolution, Aspects of the interaction between animals and plants. 4. Influence of climatic conditions on animal production. Indigenous breeds of cattle, horses, sheep and goats in the Alps. The protection of limited populations: motives, methods, opportunities. Livestock production in a specific territorial context. Multifunctional aspects of livestock and pastoral activities in the mountains; animals and care and maintenance of the land, animals and tourism, animals and culture. Grazing in terms of maintenance, environmental improvement, prevention of natural disasters.
Anatomy and physiology of domestic animals
VET/01 - VETERINARY ANATOMY - University credits: 4
Laboratories: 8 hours
Lessons: 28 hours
Professor: Rosi Fabia
Mountain animal farming
AGR/19 - ANIMAL SCIENCE - University credits: 4
Practicals: 16 hours
Lessons: 24 hours
Professor: Corti Michele