Matutinal is a term used in the life sciences
Biology is a natural science concerned with the study of life and living organisms, including their structure, function, growth, origin, evolution, distribution, and taxonomy. Biology is a vast subject containing many subdivisions, topics, and disciplines...

 to describe an organism that is only or primarily active in the pre-dawn
Dawn is the time that marks the beginning of the twilight before sunrise. It is recognized by the presence of weak sunlight, while the sun itself is still below the horizon...

 hours or early morning
The word morning originally referred to the sunrise. Morning precedes midday, afternoon, and night in the sequence of a day.Morning is the part of the day usually reckoned from dawn to noon...

. The variant term matinal is used only in entomology
Entomology is the scientific study of insects, a branch of arthropodology...

, often used in literature on the natural history
Natural history
Natural history is the scientific research of plants or animals, leaning more towards observational rather than experimental methods of study, and encompasses more research published in magazines than in academic journals. Grouped among the natural sciences, natural history is the systematic study...

 and ecology
Ecology is the scientific study of the relations that living organisms have with respect to each other and their natural environment. Variables of interest to ecologists include the composition, distribution, amount , number, and changing states of organisms within and among ecosystems...

 of bee
Bees are flying insects closely related to wasps and ants, and are known for their role in pollination and for producing honey and beeswax. Bees are a monophyletic lineage within the superfamily Apoidea, presently classified by the unranked taxon name Anthophila...

s. There are numerous genera
Genera is a commercial operating system and development environment for Lisp machines developed by Symbolics. It is essentially a fork of an earlier operating system originating on the MIT AI Lab's Lisp machines which Symbolics had used in common with LMI and Texas Instruments...

 and species of bees that exhibit this behavior, it is presumed to escape from competition for resources, and many flowers (such as the aptly named morning glory
Morning glory
Morning glory is a common name for over 1,000 species of flowering plants in the family Convolvulaceae, whose current taxonomy and systematics is in flux...

) have adapted to this particular pollination
Pollination is the process by which pollen is transferred in plants, thereby enabling fertilisation and sexual reproduction. Pollen grains transport the male gametes to where the female gamete are contained within the carpel; in gymnosperms the pollen is directly applied to the ovule itself...

The etymology
Etymology is the study of the history of words, their origins, and how their form and meaning have changed over time.For languages with a long written history, etymologists make use of texts in these languages and texts about the languages to gather knowledge about how words were used during...

 of the term is the Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 word mātūtīnus, "of or pertaining to the morning" (from Mātūta
Mater Matuta
Mater Matuta was an indigenous Roman goddess, whom the Romans eventually made equivalent to the dawn goddess Aurora, and the Greek goddess Eos. Mater Matuta had a temple on the Forum Boarium, and she was also associated with the sea harbors and ports, where there were other temples to her.Her...

, Roman goddess of the dawn + -īnus, "-ine") + -ālis, "-al".
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