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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Adam W Stern, DVM, CMI-IV, CFC, DACVP (University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine)
Description: Veterinary forensics is a rapidly growing field. All chapters in this concise reference on wildlife forensics are united by this common theme, but they incorporate a vast number of different topics.
Purpose: The main purpose of the book is to share knowledge pertaining to wildlife forensics that will lead to advancement of the field. The information in this book is of value to all members of the forensic investigation team.
Audience: Those involved in veterinary forensics, including veterinarians, toxicologists, entomologists, and the other members of the forensic investigation team are the intended audience. The authors are from private practice, academia, and the federal government, while the 30 contributors include attorneys, anthropologists, entomologists, statisticians, and a veterinarian.
Features: Some of the topics this book discusses are evidence collection, forensic entomology, utilization of hair morphology in the identification of mammals, forensic DNA analysis, and the future of wildlife forensic science. The chapter on forensic entomology and wildlife provides a nice overview of the subject, a section dedicated to sample collection, preservation, and shipping of samples, as well as an excellent forensic entomology data collection worksheet. A chapter dedicated to forensic pathology and toxicology discusses methods of investigation of certain types of wounds (gunshot, arrows) and poisons. The one shortcoming of this chapter is that it is written for conservation officers, not pathologists, although this may be understandable as a majority of the time a conservation officer is the one who collects samples from the animal's body. This is the only chapter to have color photographs — a welcome feature.
Assessment: This book is written in an easy to comprehend style and the concise chapters are full of information. Few books are specific to veterinary forensics and I would recommend this one for the library of anyone involved in this field.