Maggots on the menu at Forensic Mondays

Forensic Mondays continues it sessions in “exploring the realities and destroying the myths of forensic science” today, Monday, Sept. 23, beginning at 6 p.m. with a board-certified entomologist coming to Buckhannon from the Forensic and Investigative Sciences program at West Virginia University, announced program director David D. Taylor.

“We are continuing our commitment to bring the best of the best presenters to our community to learn about forensic science, and TV can’t touch this,” Taylor stated. “We are exceptionally honored to have Dr. Rachel M. Mohr who has been brandishing a bug net for nearly 12 years now to be our next distinguished speaker,” said Taylor.

A longtime proponent of applied entomology, Mohr’s Master of Science degree work at the University of California at Riverside focused on flies and ticks that feed on live human beings and other animals.

Her doctoral research at Texas A&M centered on working on the ecology of flies attracted to the dead.

“While at Texas A & M, Dr. Mohr developed a new means of estimating minimum postmortem interval using the ovaries of adult blowflies,” said Taylor.

“What Dr. Mohr brings to our Forensic Mondays presentation is absolutely stunning,” said Mary Albaugh, post adjunct of the Frank B. Bartlett Post No. 7 of the American Legion. “She has collaborated on projects with colleagues ranging from the Forensic Anthropology Research Facility at Texas State University to University Kebangsaan in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.”

Mohr, a board-certified entomologist since 2012, relocated to West Virginia that same year to serve as a professor within the Forensic and Investigative Sciences program at West Virginia University. She is currently overseeing a project investigating the best means of extracting human DNA from fly larvae and in the planning stages of a citizen science project tracking the expansion of the invasive hairy maggot blowfly.

“Although a relative newcomer to West Virginia, Dr. Mohr is actively interested in engaging and serving the needs of the Mid-Atlantic community and she can be reached at,” Taylor noted.

Mohr has worked on over 15 civil and criminal cases involving both the postmortem colonization of human remains and the ante mortem colonization of live humans. Additionally, she is active within entomological and forensics communities as a member of the American Academy of Forensic Science, the Entomological Society of American and the North American Forensic Entomology Association.

To print off a registration form or download a program brochure on the Forensic Mondays program, please visit Participants under the 18 of age must have a parent/legal guardian signed permission form before attending any session.

For additional information or to reserve a seat for this captivating session from the field of forensic entomology, you will need to contact Mary Albaugh by either calling 304-460-7377 or via email at

“All Forensic Mondays session are held at 16 South Kanawha Street in Buckhannon and there is no cost to attend,” said Albaugh.