How to translate text using browser tools
20 November 2015 Decomposition of Concealed and Exposed Porcine Remains in the North Carolina Piedmont
J. A. Cammack, A. C. Cohen, K. L. Kreitlow, R. M. Roe, D. W. Watson
Author Affiliations +

We examined the decomposition and subsequent insect colonization of small pig carrion (Sus scrofa (L.)) placed in concealed and open environments during spring, summer, and fall in Raleigh, North Carolina, as a model for juvenile human remains. Remains were concealed in simulated attics in three manners, ranging from minimal to well-concealed. Concealment had a significant effect on the insect community colonizing the remains across all three seasons; the beetles Necrobia rufipes (DeGeer) (Cleridae) and Dermestes maculatus (DeGeer) (Coleoptera: Dermestidae) were the only species indicative of remains located indoors, whereas numerous fly (Diptera: Calliphoridae, Muscidae, Sepsidae, and Piophilidae) and beetle (Coleoptera: Silphidae, Staphylinidae, and Histeridae) species and an ant species (Hymenoptera: Formicidae, Prenolepis sp.) were indicative of remains located outdoors. Season also significantly affected the insect species, particularly the blow flies (Diptera: Calliphoridae) colonizing remains: Lucilia illustris (Meigen) was indicative of the spring, Cochliomyia macellaria (F.) and Chrysomya megacephala (F.) were indicative of the summer, and Calliphora vicina Robineau-Desvoidy and Calliphora vomitoria (L.) were indicative of the fall. In addition, across all seasons, colonization was delayed by 35–768 h, depending on the degree of concealment. These differences among the insect communities across seasons and concealment treatments, and the effects of concealment on colonization indicate that such information is important and should to be considered when analyzing entomological evidence for criminal investigations.

© The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:
J. A. Cammack, A. C. Cohen, K. L. Kreitlow, R. M. Roe, and D. W. Watson "Decomposition of Concealed and Exposed Porcine Remains in the North Carolina Piedmont," Journal of Medical Entomology 53(1), 67-75, (20 November 2015).
Received: 15 May 2015; Accepted: 24 October 2015; Published: 20 November 2015

This article is only available to subscribers.
It is not available for individual sale.

community assembly
forensic entomology
Get copyright permission
Back to Top