Who would volunteer either themselves or family member for this?
Birds thwart human body farm
May 14, 2007 10:07am

A UNIVERSITY has scuttled plans to set up a human body farm after a nearby airport warned that vultures drawn to the corpses would be too close to its flight paths.
It was the second time a complaint from neighbors forced the Texas university to look for a new site for the body farm.

The farm will be used as a forensic research facility to help law enforcement officers determine the rate at which bodies decompose. This will help them better pinpoint time of death in murder investigations.
It will house six to eight corpses at a time in various states of decomposition.

Some will be buried in shallow graves, some will be deep underground and others will be left on the surface.

A razor-wire fence will keep larger animals and the curious away and the bodies on the surface will be protected with mesh cages.

But the smell of a body decomposing in the Texas sun is bound to attract flocks of the huge birds.

"Their concern was that with incoming and outgoing air traffic large birds would be a dangerous mix,'' Texas State University spokesman Mark Hendricks said.

Officials at the university will start looking for a new site sometime next week, Hendricks said.

There are currently two other body farms in the United States: one in Tennessee and another in North Carolina.

But the climate and topography in Texas is very different and those studies don't adequately establish the rate of decomposition in the Lone Star State.

"We very much want this facility,'' Hendricks said in a telephone interview.

"To be able to make a baseline study in this region under these conditions would be very useful for law enforcement.''

The university had hoped to set up the body farm on the east side of San Marcos, Texas which is part of the state's hot and dusty plains region.

But now it looks as though they will have to find a spot in the less-popular hilly areas to the north and west of the city.

"We're going to find one without neighbors,'' Hendricks said.

"The more secluded the better.''

Research or no research, that's just morbid.
I didn't know there was one of those in Texas!
I'm curious...I can definetely see the need for something like this. Forensics can tell many stories and solve many crimes. However, where would the Church stand on this? Do they view it as necessary or disrespectful to the body?  
One of the Corporal Acts of Mercy: the bury the dead.

How ghastly.
These Body Farms are actually indispensable for knowledge about how the human body decays under varying  circumstances. Bill Bass started the first one in Tennessee.
Quote:But the farm's complete body of work is far more useful in helping to solve real crimes by helping law enforcement authorities and medical examiners to more accurately pinpoint time of death -- a critical detail in many cases.

Vultures? What ever happened to good old fashioned rifles?
I wouldn't mind myself or a family member being part of this experiment, as long as the remains would be buried properly after the experiment is over, and as long as the experiment didn't last too incredibly long.  I'd say 6 months would be my maximum.
I watched a show on PBS about how forensic scientists use these experiments.  It was actually really interesting.
And yes the families do get to bury the person afterward, just like if a body is donated for medical studies.


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