Planet Earth

That Word You Heard: Crepuscular

These animals are active from dusk 'til dawn.

By Lacy SchleyJun 12, 2019 5:00 AM
(Credit: Chad Edwards)

Newsletter

Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news
 

For most of us, when the sun’s up, we’re up. Other critters are nocturnal, operating mainly at night. But not everything falls into those two camps. Many creatures are crepuscular — most active at dusk and dawn — including some species of butterflies, bees, deer, rabbits, even house cats. The trait can allow these animals to avoid extreme temperatures, predators and competition with others over resources. Meteorologists also use the term to describe some types of light rays from the sun, such as the ones that pierce through clouds like spotlights.

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month
Already a subscriber? Log In or Register
1 free articleSubscribe
Want unlimited access?

Subscribe today and save 70%

Subscribe

Already a subscriber? Log In or Register
More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Join
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

 
Subscribe
To The Magazine

Save up to 70% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2021 Kalmbach Media Co.