In the past years a strong effort to cooperate between public veterinary
and marine mammal zoologists has occurred. A team was established between the Fondazione
Cetacea, as part of the national network of Centro Studi Cetacei, and veterinarians of the
"Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale della Lombardia e dell'Emilia, sezione di Forlì".
The paper resume the postmortem analysis results of odontocetes stranded along the Emilia
Romagna and Marche coasts controlled by the group. In the northern Adriatic Sea, the main
species present is Tursiops truncatus, which also represent the main sample specimens.
Also Grampus griseus and Stenella coeruleoalba were controlled. In this area only
single specimen strandings were recorded and for some of them a possible cause of death could be
determined. High levels of parasitism and a general immunodeficiency can be related to the high
level of contamination by heavy metals recorded in some of the sampled animals. Other
pathologies and some particular cases of aorta aneurysm and intestinal torsion in a newborn are
described with the aim to enlarge the cases description in this group of species.