SPECIES: Morelia viridis
I have a built-in INFRARED CAMERA
When Mother Nature created the eyes of Morelia viridis, she must’ve been in a rather quirky mood: That’s because this creature’s eyes are good for little more than distinguishing the dark from the light and perceiving movement. Nonetheless the animal is a fearsome hunter. It compensates for its “visual impairment” with a whole range of other organs: Its tongue absorbs odor compounds that are identified in the Jacobson’s organ located in the roof of its mouth ( helping it to distinguish prey from predators and determine if attack or defense is in order). The up to 10-foot-long ambush predator can also perceive the slightest vibrations in its surroundings. But that’s not all: The pit organ located directly beneath the scales around each eye works like a built- in infrared camera to produce nonstop thermal images of potential prey. Who still relies on eyes, anyway?