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Using forensics in wildlife crime investigation

Guides to help enforcement officers and forensic laboratory scientists

Wildlife forensic science is a specialist branch of forensics. Its use in criminal investigations is therefore largely based on standard forensic best practice, although there are some particular differences that should be considered when attending a wildlife crime scene or performing laboratory analysis. The following guides have been prepared to help enforcement officers and forensic laboratory scientists, respectively.

The PAW FWG has produced ‘A guide to the use of specialist techniques in the investigation of wildlife crime’, for wildlife law enforcers. Please download here.

  1. The Society for Wildlife Forensic Science (SWFS) has produced a document that describes the minimum standards and additional guidelines for wildlife forensic analysts in the sub disciplines of DNA and morphology. Please download here.
  2. A guide to laboratory techniques to determine species and origin of timber products. Please download here.
  3. Guidance document for the swabbing of animal bite marks and sampling from suspected offending animals. Please download here.
  4. Collection of entomology samples to assist in the investigation of wildlife crime. Please download here.
  5. Forensic entomology – Martin Hall, Amoret Whitaker and Cameron Richards. Please download here.
  6. Ranald Munro and Guy Shorrock chapter ‘Investigating Wildlife Crime’ in ‘BSAVA Manual of Wildlife Casualties’ 2016. Please download here.
  7. NEW:  Handling suspected poisoned baits and victims video. A flowchart to assist with seizures is available on Police Knowledge Hub.
  8. NEW: Guidance on use of Soil/Vegetation in Wildlife Crime Investigation available on Police Knowledge Hub or contact FWG.

FWG Chair
SASA Wildlife DNA Forensics Unit
Tel: 0131 2448929

Stephanie PENDRY
FWG Co-ordinator
Mobile: 07768 825550