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Optical coherence tomography (OCT) has great potential for deciphering the role of mechanics in normal and abnormal heart development. OCT images tissue microstructure and blood flow deep into the tissue (1-2 mm) at high spatiotemporal resolutions allowing unprecedented images of the developing heart. Here, we review the advancement of OCT technology to image heart development and report some of our recent findings utilizing OCT imaging under environmental control for longitudinal imaging. Precise control of the environment is absolutely required in longitudinal studies that follow the growth of the embryo or studies comparing normal versus perturbed heart development to obtain meaningful in vivo results. These types of studies are essential to tease out the influence of cardiac dynamics on molecular expression and their role in the progression of congenital heart defects.