slender snake swallows an animal much bigger than itself
because of the flexibility of a snakes body and the special
construction of its jaws. A snake's upper and lower jaws
are loosely connected: the lower jaw has two parts that
are joined by flexible tissue. All these features allow
a snake to open its mouth very wide. Taking a prey animal
in headfirst, a snake swallows it by moving first one
side of its jaws forward and then the other.
amounts of saliva produced in snake's mouth make the prey
go down easier. Small animals are usually swallowed in
a few minutes, but it may take several hours to consume
a large one. After a snake has eaten a big meal, it may
not hunt again for several weeks. If neccesary, snakes
can go without food for months at a time.