Forensic Ecology



Forensic Entomology can provide valuable evidence to assist in establishing post-mortem interval (and hence time of death) as well as other matters such as whether or not a body was moved after death.

Establishing the post-mortem interval can be particularly useful in helping to corroborate or refute witness accounts regarding the last sightings of a deceased person. Collection and preservation of the appropriate evidence is vital for an accurate assessment to be made, as is the accurate recording of environmental conditions and we would always recommend that contact is made with Forensic Access at the earliest opportunity to obtain the appropriate advice and to establish whether a scene visit is required.  



Diatoms are algae, microscopic unicellular plants that can be found in saltwater, freshwater, soils and on damp surfaces.

In a case of “common drowning”, water, containing diatoms, enters the lungs and then passes into the bloodstream where the diatoms are circulated around the body to all body organs.

The presence or absence of diatoms within the lungs and other body organs can assist in establishing whether drowning was the cause of death or significantly contributed to the cause of death. Please contact us for advice on sample collection and submission at the earliest opportunity.



Forensic palynology is the examination and comparison of pollen, spores and other microscopic particles. It can assist in any crime where there is a requirement to establish whether or not a person or vehicle may have been in a particular location.

Palynology is often used in association with other evidence types. For example, it might be useful to carry out a comparison of soil on an exhibit with soil from a scene of crime and to also carry out a comparison of the pollen from both locations. A botanical survey of the location may also assist with the interpretation.


Soil Examination

The recovery and comparison of soil, and other geological samples, can provide valuable intelligence and corroborative evidence in a variety of crimes.

Geological samples recovered from a suspect, for example, from shoes, clothing or a vehicle, can be compared against samples from a location of interest and help establish whether or not there is any form of association between them. Such comparisons are often carried out together with other examination types such as the presence of pollen within the soil samples.

A detailed geological analysis of soil samples can provide valuable intelligence regarding the geographical area that the soil originated from. This can prove useful in cases such as missing person enquiries or where items are believed to have been buried. Again, this type of examination may also include other evidence types such as plant material, pollen and manmade deposits present within the soil or associated with it.

Forensic Access provides a full range of ecology services including soil, pollen and botany.

To find out more about our forensic services Tel: 01235 774870 to speak with a member of our team or fill-in our online contact form.

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Find out more about Ecology services

Fill in our online contact form or Tel: 01235 774870 to speak with our team.

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