cod. 23776

Academic year 2014/15
2° year of course - Second semester
Academic discipline
Zootecnica speciale (AGR/19)
Discipline della zootecnica, allevamento e nutrizione animale
Type of training activity
56 hours
of face-to-face activities
4 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit
in - - -

Integrated course unit module: Special zootechnics

Learning objectives

The course aims to enable the student to know and to understand the essential elements of morphological evaluation of farm animals, the methods of dairy cattle breeding, the different types of structures, the composition and quality of bovine milk, the main criteria of animal welfare, physioclimatology and farm hygiene.
This is also with the aim to develop the student's ability to use the knowledge and understanding gained in identifying the different problems that can occur in different types of dairy cattle farms.

The student, also, applying the knowledge and understanding acquired, must be able, also working with farmers and other professionals, to
- contribute to the proper management of a dairy cattle farm
- Contribute to the prevention of problems that can meet a dairy cattle farm
- Know how to detect and interpret the main parameters of a dairy cattle farm


Prerequisites: 1005122 - Anatomia Normale Veterinaria and 1004812 - Zootecnica Generale e Miglioramento Genetico

Course unit content

The first part of the course is focused on morpho-functional evaluation of cattle: Regions in the head, in the trunk, in the fore legs and related defects, in the hind legs and related defects. First elements of animal mechanics and stance evaluation. Weighing and measurements. Morphologic evaluation.
The second part of the course focuses on breeding of dairy cows, calves and heifers. Also describes the different types of housing and the different types of milking systems.
The third part of the course takes into consideration the quantitative and qualitative characteristics of bovine milk, the different factors of milk variation and milk quality payment system.
The fourth part of the course is the morpho-functional evaluation of animals in livestock production.
The fifth part of the course focuses on animal welfare, analyzing the main cattle and pig welfare legislation and relations with the breeding structures.
The sixth part of the course deals with the principles of farm hygiene, the main methods of cleaning, disinfection and disinfestation and the general criteria of livestock biosecurity.
In the last part of the course will discuss the main concepts of physioclimatology, climate and microclimate, methods of measurement of climatic parameters, definition and calculation of THI.

During the course guided tours to dairy cattle farms will be carried out.

Full programme

Bovine morpho-functional evaluation elements. Brachimorphous, dolicomorphous and mesomorphous typologies. Cattle coats. Morpho-functional evaluation methods of animals and report cards. Regions in the head. Regions in the trunk. Regions in the fore legs and related defects. Regions in the hind legs and related defects. First elements of animal mechanics and stance evaluation. Weighing and measurements. Morphologic evaluation.
Dairy cattle breeding and milk production. Dairy cow consistence and possible productions. Productive cicle of dairy cow. Dairy cow breeding organisation. Calf breeding for replacement. Heifer breeding. Dairy cow breeding. Culling and replacement. Causes of cow culling. Cow housing types: tie-stall and free-stall. Machine milking. Milking systems: milking equipment for cowsheds and milking installations for milking parlours.
Milk quality and properties and variation factors. Milk chemical composition. Milk proteins. Milk physico-chemical properties. Variation factors in milk production: genetic factors, physiological factors, feeding factors, pathological factors climatic conditions and management. Principles of milk production legislation. Milk quality payment.
Morpho-functional evaluation of livestock. Morpho-functional typology elements and aptitude of livestock animals. Animal mechanics and evaluation of plumb-lines. Movements and gaits. Horse, pig, goat and sheep coats. Horse identification. Age determination in horse and cattle and other livestock species. Age determination in dogs.
Animal welfare: the main cattle and pig welfare legislation, and the rules on animal welfare and relations with breeding structures.
Principles of farm hygiene: cleaning, disinfection and disinfestation. General criteria for biosafety.
Physioclimatology: definition of climate and microclimate; methods of measurement of climatic parameters; definition and calculation of THI. Effects of microclimate on the qualitative and quantitative productions of livestock. Active and passive control of the microclimate.

Guided tours to dairy cattle herds.


AA:VV. Benessere Animale . Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale Umbria e Marche Editore, 2010
AA.VV. Etologia applicata e benessere animale. Vol. I e II. Point Veterinarie Italie, Milano, 2008
ALAIS C.: Scienza del latte - principi di tecnologia del latte e derivati. Ed. Tecniche Nuove, Milano,1984
BITTANTE G., ANDRIGHETTO L., RAMANZIN M.: Tecniche di produzione animale. Liviana Ed., Torino, 1993
BARTOLINI R. La nuova stalla da latte. Per una zootecnia innovativa e sostenibile. Edagricole, Bologna, 2013.
CATALANO A.L.: Valutazione morfo-funzionale del cavallo. Igiene ed etnologia. Goliardica Ed., Parma, 1984
MEREGALLI A.: Conoscenza morfofunzionale degli animali domestici. Liviana Editrice, 1980.
MONETTI P.G.: Allevamento dei bovini e dei suini. Cristiano Giraldi Ed., Città di Castello (PG), 2001.
MONTEMURRO N. Igiene zootecnica. Edagricole, Bologna, 2002.
NAPOLITANO F., DE ROSA G., GRASSO F., Comportamento e benessere degli animali in produzione zootecnica. Aracne Editrice, Roma, 2007
PARIGI BINI R., SOMEDA DE MARCO A.: Zootecnica Speciale dei Bovini. Produzione della carne. Patton Ed., Bologna, 1989
SUCCI G.: Zootecnia speciale. Città Studi Ed., Milano, 1995
SUCCI G., HOFFMANN I.: La vacca da latte. Città Studi Ed., Milano, 1993

Teaching methods

During the lectures in the classroom, with the use of audio-visual facilities morphological evaluation of farm animals, the characteristics of dairy cattle farms, the properties of the milk will be presented. The course will be supported by visits to farms in order to make it clear to the student, through a direct experience in the field, the theoretical concepts discussed in the classroom.
The lessons will also be supplemented by seminars to deepen some specific issues.

Assessment methods and criteria

The assessment of the achievement of the objectives of the course is that the two modules are examined together. Therefore, the assessment of the achievement of the objectives of the course in its entirety provides a written examination followed by an oral examination, on a series of questions which will be previously provided to students at the end of each topic. Through questions regarding the course content will be determined whether the student has achieved the goal of knowledge and understanding of the content. The students must demonstrate that they have mastered the knowledge about the morphological evaluation of farm animals, on breeding of dairy cattle, on the physico-chemical and technological properties of milk, on animal welfare and on the general principles of farm hygiene. By means of the questions in the oral examination will be determined whether the student has achieved the goal of linking the arguments and to find solutions to problems, and if it proves to have good reasoning skills and independent judgment. It will be also assessed the appropriate specific language.

Other information

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