Thursday, June 21, 2007

Forensic Entomology - Worst Job Ever (almost)


submit by troym; comments by blogger jgl

Two links for this post. Both about forensic entomology...

The first was submitted by troy m about how tricky species ID of insects can be. Identifying the species of a maggot is the first step in accurately estimating how old the maggot is, which helps estimate how long a body has been dead.
Click here for the full story.

Misidentification of insects can also lead forensic scientists astray, says Kimsey. At a recent North American Forensic Entomology meeting she assembled six blowfly specimens and asked attendees to identify them. "No one identified them all correctly," says Kimsey. "We were very discouraged. If you can't identify the blowfly correctly, then your estimation of the postmortem interval could be wrong."

Next is one I found floating around the web. A look at the worst jobs in science. Look who comes in at number 9.

As a result of the success of such television shows as "CSI," the forensics field has undergone a dramatic overhaul in the eyes of the public. But don't be fooled, forensic entomology is not for the faint of heart, the squeamish, nor the insectophobic. These scientists spend their days basking in the florescent light of the city or county morgue analyzing bugs on decaying corpses. They check maggots, larvae, blowflies and anything that breeds off of decaying human flesh in order to determine the "postmortem interval," or the gap between the time of death and time of the body's discovery.

"It's incredibly gross," Ward said. "The people who handle [forensic entomology] are a whole other species of human, as far as I can tell,...

Man, rough week for the bug guys.

40 comments:

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Anonymous said...

I think forensic entomology is actually very interesting. It's great that we can use something like a bug to tell when a person died.
CLT

Forensic Bloggers said...

entomology is an interesting field. it can get a bit rough since the interpretations of evidence among experts can vary greatly.

however, some information about time of death is usually better than nothing.

-jgl

thingfish23 said...

Mr. "Whole other species of human" can go take a long walk off a short pier. I hate it when people pigeonhole forensics professionals like that - as if our jobs define us as people.

What an asshat.

Anonymous said...

but your template displayed incorrectly in my browser(chrome)

paibiopai said...

forensic entomology is an interesting field,, revealing how people died, when people died, and where people died..
I’m also doing project about forensic entomology and writing facts of blowflies and their properties in forensic entomology in my blog,, please have a visit.. thank you..

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