In Room 2, visitors can compare several species of bats (Chiroptera), the only mammals of active flight.
This is because of the modification of the upper limb, with the elongation of the bones and the fingers connected by patagium.
A small display case, in Room 4, features Insectivores (moles, hedgehogs and shrews), including the Etruscan shrew (Suncus etruscus), which is the smallest land-based mammal at 7 cm long (tail included) and a couple of grams in weight.
Rodents are the most numerous order of mammals, accounting for nearly half of all mammal species. The copyu (Myocastor coypus) and the grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) are two “alien” species, in that they do not originate from Italy.
The first can damage wild vegetation and crops and, in digging its underground burrows, can lead to instability in canal banks and artificial lakes, while the second competes with the autochthonous red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris).
The Sirenia (dugong and manatees) are the only aquatic, herbivorous mammals. They gave rise to the myth of the sirens on account of their shape, the fact that they nurse their young and the whistling noise they emit for communication purposes.