Fasting Burmese pythons were scanned before and at two, 16, 24, 40, 48, 72 and 132 hours after ingestion of one rat. The succession of images revealed a gradual disappearance of the body of the rat, accompanied by an overall expansion of the snake's intestine, shrinking of the gallbladder, and a 25-percent increase in heart volume.
Python Eating Three Rats
In one experiment, scientists fed a python three rats and watched as the snacks descended through the snake's gut and vanished.
Python Eating One Rat
The scientists used magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography to scan a python's body while the snake was eating a rat, showing the rat mid-way through the body as it was being digested.
Henrik Lauridsen and Kasper Hansen, MR Research Center, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, Denmark
A live cane toad's lungs are captured in action with a computed tomography (CT) technique.
Turtle Blood Vessels
A live turtle's blood vessels are captured in action with a magnetic resonance imaging technique.
A CT scan reveals the skeletal anatomy of a live alligator.
Scientists used MRI scanning to reveal the inner anatomy of an alligator. Contrasting agents were used to highlight specific organs in the MRI and computed tomography (CT) images.