Light is without doubt one of the greatest limitations and controls of life, and the greatest source is the Sun. For billions of years, this has influenced the way in which animals have evolved and adapted to their surroundings. As well as this, in the Sun’s absence, animals must come up with ingenious tactics in order to survive. For instance, during the night and in deep-sea environments, a lack of sunlight controls the way life behaves. Lions and other big cats for instance have evolved to hunt best in total darkness and are far more dangerous with no light.
On the other end of the spectrum, animals such as reptiles and birds can be totally dependent on the Sun. Snakes, for example need to warm-up in the Sun as they are ectotherms, and are unable to function properly when their bodies are cold. The Sun can also be used for migration, both in the sea and on the land. It therefore controls nature both directly and indirectly, and moulds the way life functions around it. Have a look at our striking new infographic and see how your favourite animal’s evolution has been affected by the Sun!