Insects, particularly Diptera, can reveal a great deal of information to investigators. By using known developmental data along with the common pattern of development displayed by flies, the time of colonization (and by logical extension, the postmortem interval) may be determined. This method requires investigators to know the exact development data of the insects at a scene and be able to do some simple calculations based on the concept of degree days (DD) or degree hours (DH). This chapter will give an overview of the methods currently used by forensic entomologists to translate the developmental cycle of flies into usable data for a crime scene.
Part of the book: Life Cycle and Development of Diptera