3536.20 - Flora and Fauna of the Faroe Islands

Course number
Flora and Fauna of the Faroe Islands
A) Admitted to the bachelor programme in biology at the University of the Faroe Islands, or B) Students following single courses with background similar to alternative A.
To provide the students with (i) the ability to identify Faroese plants (including terrestrial plants and marine macroalgae) and animals (including terrestrial and marine mammals, birds, insects, other invertebrates and arthropods living on land, in fresh water, or in marine environments at the shore and close to the shore, common near-shore fishes, etc.), and (ii) knowledge of some basic biology and ecology for these groups of organisms.
Faroese plants, birds, mammals, insects and other animals in practice (field trips) and theory (handbooks, handouts). Some basic biology and ecology concerning these groups of organisms. The field trips are short (up to one full day),focusing on particular groups of organisms, with main weight on their identification/recognition, and with supplement of other types of information. The students should make obligatory reports and presentations on selected species or groups of organisms.
Learning and teaching approaches
Lectures. Problem solving. Obligatory student reports and presentations. Obligatory field trips.
Learning outcomes
On completion of the course, the successful student should be able to: o Briefly explain the concepts of species, systematics and phylogenetic trees, and how the major groups of organisms are related to each other. o Identify (without handbooks) the majority of birds commonly breeding in the Faroe Islands or visiting the Faroe Islands in larger numbers during one or several seasons, and show the practical identification of an unknown bird using relevant avian handbooks. o Describe migration patterns for Faroese birds and other birds that migrate through Faroe Islands. o Recognize at least 5 common Faroese breeding birds or common guests by their song/sounds. o Identify and briefly describe the most common groups of terrestrial and fresh water Faroese arthropods (including insects), and some selected organisms should be identified down to species level. o Identify the most common Faroese flowering plants, grasses and other Faroese plants (without handbooks), and describe their taxonomic characteristics. o Briefly describe the major plant structures with their forms and functions, including photosynthesis. o Briefly describe the basic vegetation types of the Faroe Islands. o Briefly describe the basic characteristics and functions of lichens and mosses. o Describe the differences between red, green and brown macroalgae. o Explain the characteristics of marine macroalgae, and give a brief description of their biology. o Identify at least 10 of the most common Faroese marine macroalgae. o Identify the major Faroese freshwater and near-shore fishes, and briefly describe their biology. o Identify the major groups of macroscopic creatures living on/in Faroese shores (like crustaceans, polychaetes, molluscs and other common creatures). o Identify all the terrestrial mammals in the Faroes and the most common marine mammals in the Faroese waters, and briefly describe their biology.
Assessment method
Combination of: 1) Accepted obligatory exercizes, reports and presentations. The obligatory exercizes, reports and presentations must be delivered within the specified deadlines, and are evaluated as passed/not passed. All such obligatory work must be passed to be allowed to sit the final examination. and 2) A final examination, which includes the practical identification of organisms from images, specimens and/or sounds, in addition to theoretical questions. Parts of the exam will be without any auxiliary materials, other parts with auxiliary materials. A re-examination may be oral, written, or both. In case of re-examination, all obligatory reports and presentions report must have been accepted.
Marking scale
Supporting textbooks: Anna Maria Fosaa, Eilif Gaard, Jóannes Dalsgarð, Magnus Gaarð: Føroya náttura. Lívføðiligt margfeldi. Føroya Skulabókagrunnur. ISBN: 99918-0-407-2. NA Campbell et al: Biology. A Global Approach. 11th ed. Pearson. ISBN-10: 1-292-17043-3. ISBN-13: 978-1-202-17043-5. Handbooks: Birds: (Recommended) Lars Svensson et al: Fugle i felten. Feltbestemmelse af fuglene i Europa og Middelhavsområdet. ISBN:9788711427491. Available from naturbutikken.dk. (Alternative) Søren Sørensen, Dorete Bloch: Fuglar í Norðurhøvum. Føroya Skúlabókagrunnar. ISBN: 99918-0-288-6. Plants: Jóhannes Jóhansen (& Anna Maria Fosaa, Sigga Rasmussen): Føroysk flora. Føroya Skúlabokagrunnur. ISBN 99918-0-058-1. Hand-outs
Svein-Ole Mikalsen