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Welcome to the Body Farm | Explorer

October 17, 2019


[music playing] FRANCESCA FIORENTINI
(VOICEOVER): That’s how I ended
up in a body farm, the biggest one in the country. The Forensic Anthropology
Research Center in South Texas studies how bodies
decompose, and why. Their research helps law
enforcement officers, forensic specialists,
and scientists figure out when and how a person died. I don’t know if you’ve
ever tried digging holes, especially in Texas. It’s a pretty difficult thing
to do with all the limestone we have around here. Totally. So another way that
Perpetrators tend to cover the bodies by throwing
refuse on it, you know, whatever’s around, just to
try to conceal the body. FRANCESCA FIORENTINI:
Perpetrators. Right. FRANCESCA FIORENTINI:
So murderers. Exactly. So what this thesis project
is attempting to replicate is, in that instance, that
they throw a mattress on top of the body, how that
affects the decomposition rate of these humans. FRANCESCA FIORENTINI: Wow. So if I donated my body
here, I could help solve a murder from beyond the grave. What other good deeds can my
rotting corpse do for humanity? [music playing] That’s– that’s real. OK. I am studying how the
clothing will affect vultures’ scavenging, if clothing,
like, impedes their ability to access the body. They have a very
strong sense of smell. Are they just, like– are
they watching us right now? KRYSTLE LEWIS: They could be. [music playing]

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