Applications of entomological evidence have increased significantly since the 1980s. Although the major application is estimation of the postmortem interval, entomological evidence also can be applied to toxicology, DNA analyses, and aspects of crime scene assessment. Although there have been many advances, there is still a need for much basic research. Questions remain with regard to the life cycles of many of the necrophagous arthropods, particularly

Coleoptera. One problem in application of entomological evidence is the diversity of the insect fauna which changes from one geographic area to the next. Databases are still needed for many parts of the world where the sarcosaprophagous fauna is poorly known. Even in areas relatively well investigated, there may be significant microgeographic variation in the insect fauna. Additional investigations are needed in the areas of toxicological analyses and applications of DNA technology. A current underlying problem is the relative lack of trained forensic entomologists. Most individuals now working in the field are employed in academic institutions where only a small part of their research effort is assigned to forensic concerns.

See Also the Following Article

Medical Entomology

Further Reading

Catts, E. P., and Goff, M. L. (1992). Forensic entomology in criminal investigations. Annu. Rev. Entomol. 37, 253—272. Early, M., and Goff, M. L. (1986). Arthropod succession patterns in exposed carrion on the island of O'ahu, Hawaiian Islands, USA. J. Med. Entomol. 23, 520-531.

Goff, M. L. (1993). Estimation of postmortem interval using arthropod development and successional patterns. Forens. Sci. Rev. 5, 81-94. Goff, M. L. (2000). "A Fly for the Prosecution." Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA.

Goff, M. L., Charbonneau, S., and Sullivan, W. (1991). Presence of fecal material in diapers as a potential source of error in estimations of postmortem interval using arthropod development rates. J. Forens. Sci. 36, 1603-1606. Goff, M. L., Omori, A. I., and Goodbrod, J. R. (1989). Effect of cocaine in tissues on the rate of development of Boettcherisca peregrina (Diptera: Sarcophagidae). J. Med. Entomol. 26, 91-93. Greenberg, B. (1991). Flies as forensic indicators. J. Med Entomol. 28, 565-577. Liu, D., and Greenberg, B. (1989). Immature stages of some flies of forensic importance. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 82, 80-93. Lord, W. D., and Burger, J. F. (1983). Collection and preservation of forensically important entomological materials. J. Forens. Sci. 28, 936-944. Payne, J. A. (1965). A summer carrion study of the baby pig Sus scrofa

Linnaeus. Ecology 46, 592-602. Schoenly, K., Goff, M. L., and Early, M. (1992). A BASIC algorithm for calculating the postmortem interval from arthropod successional data. J. Forens. Sci. 37, 808-823. Smith, K. V. G. (1986). "A Manual of Forensic Entomology." British Museum (Natural History), London.

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