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Please check the official study guide for the most up to date course information

Marine Mammal Health

Semester 3

The purpose of this course is to introduce the students to marine mammal health. Students will learn the anatomy, biology and physiology of some common marine mammals. They will be familiarised with the more frequently occurring diseases and pathologies. Ante mortem and postmortem examination and sampling will be addressed.

Course Contents

1. Anatomy, biology and physiology of cetacea (whale, dolphin, porpoise) and pinnepeds (sea lion, seals)

2. Care taking of stranded animals and medical interventions

3. Marine mammal pathology

4. Impact of underwater noise


Final Competencies

1  The student is familiar with the anatomy and physiology of common marine mammals.

2  The student is acquainted with handling stranded animals.

3  The student can perform a necropsy on marine mammals.

4  The student is able to take appropriate postmortem samples.

5  The student is aware of the most common diseases and their associated lesions.

6  The student is aware of the impact of noise on marine mammals.


Additional information regarding teaching methods

  • Theory lectures: lectures based on powerpoint presentations.
  • Practical courses: hands-on necropsy of sea mammals, microscopic examination.
  • Self-reliant study activities: a set of exercises which need to be prepared in advance, followed by feedback from the teacher and fellow-students.


Further course information can be found here: