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CSI Am Wrong

On Monday's CSI: Miami, which I watched last night after fishing in southern Miami, Horatio Caine and his team tracked down a crocodile that had eaten (post-mortem) a little girl. Jeff Corwin guest starred, and identified a tooth found in the girl's arm as an American Crocodile's, not an alligator's as the team had suspected.

Finding a crocodile in Florida seemed a daunting task until Jeff Corwin informed the team of several facts. One of those were that there are about 3,000 American Crocodiles in Florida. Another is that they've all been tagged, and a third is that they all hang out near a nuclear power plant for the warm water. The CSI: Miami team set out on marsh boats to find the crocodile in the swamps, eventually did, and solved the case.

This may make for good TV, but damn is that stuff wrong. I've been in several locations in Florida and have seen crocodiles. We saw crocodile signs yesterday at Black Point and we saw crocodiles themselves last week in Flamingo - 50-100 miles away from each other. Obviously they don't hang out in one place. Each one is tagged? If so, then Florida must know when crocs lay eggs, and implant them at birth. And power plants dumping their warm water onto marsh/swampland? I don't think so!

It's not surprising that a television show lied. It's surprising because it's CSI, and normally their science - though sometimes far-fetched, is usually reasonably accurate. This episode was one of the most unrealistic (and incorrect) to date.

One Response to "CSI Am Wrong"

  1. CSI:Miami hasn't made it to commercial TV where I live yet but I have been enjoying the original series.

    There are a number of "good television/bad science" stretches that even I can notice after years of not having

    done non-computer science type of science.

    There was an article about these concerns from real CSIs who get fed up with watching the show on CNN a

    while back (which I can't manage to find because CNN's site search sucks.)

    Add to that the number of times they keep saying how

    they are scientists, not cops but still interrogate suspects as if they were.

    I will keep watching it, though, in spite of all of that.


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