This course is aimed at completing and consolidating the basic zoological knowledge acquired by students within the framework of the Bachelor's Degree courses in biological, natural and environmental sciences. The primary educational objective is to provide students with a detailed knowledge of animal biodiversity, with particular reference to Vertebrates, through an evolutionary, adaptive, ecological, behavioural and phylogenetic approach. A comparative study of the Invertebrates communities of the main terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems will also be studied in depth, as will the study of the fundamental ecological role they play in natural ecological networks. This knowledge will be useful to students both for direct professional application in the management and protection of animal biodiversity (e.g. in natural parks, public and private agencies responsible for the census and monitoring of wildlife, exotic and invasive species), and as a cultural background for a post-graduate training in advanced zoological research. At the end of the course, the student must demonstrate his ability to identify the main orders and families of Vertebrates, with examples of species of the European fauna (especially those of conservation or economic interest), describing their morpho-functional features, the ecological role and phylogenetic relationships. Knowledge of the composition, relationships, adaptations and ecological role of the invertebrate communities of the various terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems will also be assessed.