Lecture: Murder, Maggots and Mayhem

Dr. Jennifer Rosati - 10/24/17

Recently, Dr. Jennifer Rosati came to the Bruce Museum to deliver her lecture: Murder, Maggots and Mayhem: When the Dead Speak. 

Forensic entomology involves the use of insects for legal purposes, primarily in homicide investigations where colonization (or egg laying) events can be used to estimate the time since death or post-mortem interval. The insect community that uses decomposing remains can be quite diverse, including many species of flies (Order: Diptera), beetles (Order: Coleoptera), moths (Order: Lepidoptera), as well as other arthropods (spiders, mites, etc). The behaviour and development of these insects can provide a lot of valuable information to an investigation including tying a suspect to a crime scene/victim, time and location of death, presence of wounds, time of decapitation or dismemberment and time of disturbance.

This talk highlighted the diversity of insect species involved with the decomposition of human remains and how these insects can provide a glimpse into past events in criminal investigations.

To see more previous Bruce Museum science lectures, click here.