The information we came across for nocturnal animals was interesting. Nocturnal animals are the ones that active at night rather than during the day. During the nighttime, animals hunt, scavenge, and roam for survival. This means searching for food or hiding from predators. Some examples of animals that live in the Iowa or Dubuque area are: bats, raccoons, skunks, river otters, snakes, and coyotes. In order for these nocturnal animals to survive at night, they must rely on their five senses. The five senses are sight, hear, taste, smell, feel. If any of these senses are not working, the others are working more efficiently.
Sense of Hearing & Smell
For some animals that cannot see very well such as the skunk, it has to rely on hearing. If you can't see what your up against than hearing is another way of detecting species, whether they are life threatening or not. Hearing a predator or prey rustle around in its surrounding will give the animal some sort of awareness to decide what to do. The sense of smell will help the animal decide if it is a predator or prey by its distinct odor.
Sense of Touch
For example, if an animal loses its ability to smell, saying that the animal has a nose cold, it might use its sense of touch to survive. The sense of touch will make the animal determine if the object is edible. The raccoon does this by detecting if fruit is ripe or not. The raccoon's hand or paw has a dense network of sensitive cells that can differentiate between various textures.
Sense of Sight
The glowing eyes of an animals is caused by a reflective tissue called the tapetum. It is located in the back of the eye behind the retina. This simply allows animals to see clearer in less light. It does this by increasing the likelihood of dim light stimulating the rods and cones in an animal's eye.