Conservation Medicine of Aquatic Animals

The participants are provided with basic knowledge and comprehension capacities about fundamentals of skills and knowledge required to be effective professionist of conservation medicine, and to enable them to assist in the development of solutions to ecological health issues. The programme aims to enable students to acquire knowledge about the interactions between animal, human and marine ecosystem health; acquire specific skills applicable to conservation medicine; understand how a conservation medicine approach can be applied in a range of practical situations in the marine environment; interpret and communicate scientific results and information (in research and other forms of social debate) across other related scientific disciplines and to other stakeholders. Skilled veterinarians and biologists would be employed in NGOs, public administrations and governmental institutions, research institutes and academies, intergovernmental and international agreements.

Director: prof. Sandro Mazzariol 

Level: 2 
Duration: one-year 
Period: November 2021 / September 2022 
Teaching method: distance learning 
Language: English

  Teaching activities and modules


1. Introduction to Conservation Medicine

1.1 Introduction to Conservation Medicine: the One Health approach

2. Policies, regulations and management of the conservation of marine vertebrates

2.1 Environmental policies: Habitat and Birds Directive; MSFD; Marina Spatial Planning; International rules and regional Agreements

3. Ecology and conservation biology

3.1 Planning and management marine vertebrate conservation: MPAs, IMMAs, Natura2000 areas and species action plans

3.2 Ecology and Conservation of large marine vertebrates

3.3 Monitoring marine vertebrates: visual and acoustic methods

3.4 New tools: drones, satellites and aerial surveys

3.5 Evaluation od the Species Conservation Status

3.6 Ex Situ Conservation and Aquaria management

3.7 Monitoring marine vertebrates: visual and acoustic methods

4. Anatomy, pathology and human interaction: known and unknown

4.1 Anatomy and Physiology

4.2 Veterinary Pathology as a tool for marine vertebrate conservation

4.3 Viral disease and emerging pathogens

4.4 Bacterial diseases

4.5 Parasitic diseases

4.6 Impact of pollution: heavy metals and organic pollutant

4.7 Macro-litter and microplastic

4.8 By-catch: problem, extension and mitigation

4.9 Assessing the impact of underwater noise on marine vertebrates: knowns and unknowns

5. Advanced in veterinary and biological analyses

5.1 Field and laboratory techniques

5.2 Wildlife crime and forensic investigations

5.2 Microbiome, genomic, proteomic, trascriptomic

5.4 Ecotoxicological analyses and investigations

5.5 Applied epidemiology and risk analysis

6. Strandings and environmental disaster management

6.1 Stranding networks

6.2 Marine mammals first response and refloatation

6.3 Marine mammals Rescue facilities management

6.4 Sea turtles rescue centers

6.5 Animal Welfare

6.6 Oil spills management

6. 7 Disentanglement training of large whales

7. Veterinary Medicine applied to marine vertebrates

7.1 Veterinary Imaging in Sea Turtles Diagnostic

7.2 Marine Mammals Medicine: rehabilitation and release

7.3 Veterinary Imaging in Marine Mammals diagnostic

7.4 Anesthesia, teleanesthesia and Euthanasia in marine mammals

7.5 Sea Turtles First Aid and Critical Care

7.6 Pratical case studies

7.7 Sea Turtles Anesthesia and Analgesia

7.8 Sea Turtles Surgery

8. Project management and communication

8.1 Public Awarness and public engagement

8.2 Communication and Media

8.3 Managing and leading conservation projects

8.4 Education and museum

  Teaching staff

The teaching staff is composed by national and international experts as listed below:

S. Mazzariol; ME. Gelain; L. Bagelloni; B. Cozzi; M. Drigo; F. Marcer; R. Verin; B. de Mori; C. di Benedetto; C. Mazzoldi; L. Marsili; C. Fossi; T. Scovizzi; A. Di Bello; D. Franchini; C. Valastro; N. Pussini; P. Saviano; S. Panigada; G. Notarbartolo di Sciara; C. Gili; A. Lucchetti.

David Mattila; Frances Gulland; Mike Ziccardi.