Sunflowers are fascinating. The oversized flowers are known for their sun-facing posture, but scientists wondered if there wasn't more at play with the sunflower's delicate "dance" with the sun.

A new study in Science demonstrates that there's more happening than a simple desire to catch more of the sun's rays. As the video illustrates, sunflowers have their own circadian regulation — just as many animals, including humans, do. This rhythm controls their growth and how they bend and sway to the sun's movement in the sky during the day; they also reorient overnight in anticipation of the sun's rise from the east. And this extra work pays off: Eastward-oriented flowers are warmer than westward-oriented flowers, and this extra bit of warmth attracts pollinators.

Researchers think that these finding about sunflowers could be applied to other species as well in future studies.

Why sunflowers 'dance' to the sun's rhythm
Sunflowers have an internal clock that helps them bend toward the sun's rising and setting.