How is pollen used as evidence?
Pollen is most commonly used in forensic detective work when it is found on the victim or criminal’s clothing. In 2012, pollen samples collected from a piece of clothing helped solve a case that had been open for 28 years.
What is palynology and what can it tell us about the past?
Palynology can be used to reconstruct past vegetation (land plants) and marine and Freshwater phytoplankton communities, and so infer past environmental (palaeoenvironmental) and palaeoclimatic conditions in an area thousands or millions of years ago, a fundamental part of research into climate change.
Why is forensic palynology not used more often?
During the past century there has been a very limited attempt to use pollen evidence in either criminal or civil cases, for a variety of reasons, including a lack of available information about the technique, a very limited number of specialists trained to do forensic pollen work, and an almost total absence of …
What is the pollen fingerprint?
What is a pollen fingerprint? Pollen collected from a crime scene is useful to figure out where and when the crime occurred. A pollen fingerprint is the number and type of pollen grains found in a geographic area at a specific time of the year.
What aspects of a crime can pollen help to determine?
This transferability is among several reasons why pollen is being investigated for forensic tracking and may be a key element in helping to determine place of origin and movement in a variety of circumstances, including the investigation of criminal activity.
How is a pollen fingerprint useful in building a case against suspects in crimes?
When compared with pollen samples from a suspect’s clothing, shoes, or vehicle, these “pollen prints” can point criminal investigators to a specific geographical location, prove or destroy alibis, and link a suspect to the scene of a crime.
Why is palynology so important?
Palynology is a useful tool in many applications, including a survey of atmospheric pollen and spore production and dispersal (aerobiology), in the study of human allergies, the archaeological excavation of shipwrecks, and detailed analysis of animal diets.
What is Palyno taxonomy?
Palynology is the study of Pollen grains. Fossil spores are found in peat and other sediments, in lignite, coal and shales. They are evident since Pre-Cambrian times hundreds of millions of years ago. Pollen grains morphology plays an important role in taxonomic classification.
Who invented forensic palynology?
In 1944 Harold Hyde and David Williams of Cardiff introduced the term palynology, based on the Greek words paluno (to sprinkle) and pale (dust), in the pages of the Pollen Analysis Circular, one of the first journals of pollen analysis.
Who discovered forensic palynology?
The Daubert standard Bryant originally discovered the applications of forensic palynology through its use by New Zealand and British governments in the 1970s – where pollen analysis is admissible as evidence in courts – who embraced the technique in law enforcement much quicker than the USA did.
What information can pollen evidence provide to an investigator?
By analyzing what types of pollen were present in the drug samples, investigators could track where the drugs were made, where they were shipped, how they entered the country, and where they were being distributed because of the pollen that was present in the samples.
What is it called if you study pollen and spore evidence to help solve criminal cases?
Palynology is the study of pollen grains and other spores. I’d called Laurence after reading about a cold case: A woman was murdered in Baltimore County in 1976 and, nearly 40 years later, still lacked an identify.