We have all at least heard of shows like CSI, and Criminal Minds. There are even many respected colleges and universities around the world that are beginning to offer classes that teach the tricks of the forensics trade. In fact, the crime scene investigation fad is so popular that there are even many online schools that purport to be turning out the cleverest minds that the field of CSI has ever had among its ranks. However, insects are also a huge part of crime scene investigation, and television shows rarely depict this more tedious and less sexy component of crime scene investigation.


For example, flies happen to be a tremendously important factor to keep in mind when evaluating a crime scene. Flies are normally quicker to arrive at a murder scene than the detectives themselves. In fact, some fly species are known to arrive at a murder scene within just a few minutes after the victim’s death. The blowfly happens to be the most telling fly when it comes to establishing a time of death.


The blowfly, as well as several other fly species, will plant eggs at various points among the deceased person’s body. These points include the nose, mouth, ears, and just about any bodily orifice you can conjure. After twenty four hours these eggs will hatch, and larvae and maggots will then become present on the body of the deceased. The maggots then undergo various physiological processes before becoming a fly. This metamorphosis takes time, and scientists are well aware of the time frame it takes between egg laying and the moment a maggot becomes a fly. This information is used to date the body of the deceased, enabling experts to determine the time of death. This is certainly not the grossest aspect of crime scene investigative work, so if you were thinking of becoming a CSI hotshot, focus less on Criminal Minds, and more on the science of the job.

Have you ever considered crime scene investigation solely for the bugs involved?

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