by Adeola Balogun
Snakes are one of the world’s most intriguing creatures, especially pythons and other super-sized ones.
The most astounding feature of these reptiles is their ability to swallow other animals whole.
This 8 foot African rock Python was spotted in the Moremi Game Reserve in Botswana swallowing an Impala whole!
Daily Mail reports:
The images were captured by photographer Fred von Winckelmann, from Eindhoven in the Netherlands, whilst on a game drive.
He said: ‘Seeing an African rock python swallowing a young impala is a once-in-a-lifetime sighting.’
He added: ‘The snake was calmly swallowing his meal without giving us any attention, so I was allowed to go belly-down to get eye-level photos of the reptile.
‘We arrived when the snake was starting to dislocate its jaws around the antelope’s waist and in 45 minutes it swallowed the last hooves.
‘That was when we let the python digest it in peace because they are so vulnerable when doing so.’
More photos below:
Pythons are able to swallow such large prey thanks to dislocatable jaws rigged with tendons, muscles and ligaments that can stretch to extraordinary lengths.
They first kill their prey by wrapping their bodies around them and crushing them using powerful body muscles.