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June 22, 2019

Turning Nighttime into Sight Time Vacation

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I live in a wooded area. There are no streetlights nearby, and after the sun sets it can get pitch black, especially on moonless nights. Sometimes I take the garbage out before going to bed. The garbage can is in a locked bin that sits in a remote corner of the driveway where the houselights don’t reach. Feeling my way in the darkness, I hear the night sounds in the woods. A mockingbird’s song. A rustle in the bushes. Could it be a raccoon? A fox? Even a bear? That’s when I wish I had night vision. Both humans and mammals depend upon visible light to see. But many nocturnal animals, including raccoons and opossums have unusually large eyes to help them see better in the night, helping them sneak up on sleeping or unsuspecting prey. Carnivorous animals such as red foxes use good night vision for hunting as well.


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