Using micro CT scans, researchers created high-resolution images of three mummified animals: a snake, a bird, and a cat.
The samples date back more than 2,000 years.
Animals were mummified by the ancient Egyptians to create votive offerings in religious practice. They were embalmed by temple priests.
Some were also buried with their human owners, or as food for the after-life.
Johnston et. al., 2020
The coiled snake, an Egyptian cobra, was a juvenile and had some kidney damage.
Bone fractures suggest the snake was killed by a whipping action, and that its mouth may have been opened during mummification.
The bird specimen most closely resembles the Eurasian kestrel, researchers say.
"The hi-tech tools of today can shed new light on the distant past."
—Lead researcher Richard Johnston
Read more here about what mummified animals — like dogs and wolves — can teach science about natural history
S Fedorov/Center for Palaeogenetics