Observations of Differential Decomposition on Sun Exposed v. Shaded Pig Carrion in Coastal Washington State

J Forensic Sci. 1993 Jul;38(4):938-49.


The decomposition of two pig carcasses in close proximity to each other, one exposed and the other shaded, in a continuous woodland were observed and different rates of decay were recorded. The exposed pig decomposed much faster than the shaded pig, reaching a stable minimal weight two weeks before the shaded carcass. Bloat size, body weight, occurrence of blow fly larvae, and ambient air temperatures are compared. Maggot development appeared to be a major factor in the overall rate of decomposition and was affected primarily by different temperature patterns at the two sites.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Diptera
  • Female
  • Myiasis*
  • Oviposition
  • Postmortem Changes*
  • Sunlight*
  • Swine
  • Time Factors
  • Washington
  • Weight Loss