When reading this SE Q&A: Would visible light still be in a separate classification if we saw "colors" in a different wavelength? I started to wonder if we evolved to see the visible slice of the EM spectrum precisely because that's what most matter emits and reflects, more so than the rest of the spectrum; perhaps at least at our everyday temperatures. If this were not the case, it seems there would be no reason why most animals evolved to perceive the same slice of the EM spectrum. I understand that some matter emits, and some animals perceive, slightly below and above visible frequencies. My own guess at an answer would be yes. And the speculative reason would be that existing atoms have electrons in a limited range of energy levels and thus emit a limited range of frequencies when excited. One reason I ask is because answers to the linked question say that there is nothing special about visible light, but I suspect there is. Edit: I understand there is nothing qualitatively different or intrinsically special about visible light. Rather I'm wondering if there is something special about the relationship between matter and visible light.
It may be because visible light is the shortest wavelengths not significantly absorbed by air. This corresponds to the brightest light emitted by the sun.
Here is the transmittance of the atmosphere.
By contrast, this is the absorption spectrum of water. In 10 feet of water, red objects appear black. I would expect many fish not to see red.
Image 1 is from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infrared_window, which attributes it to the public domain.
Image 2 is a screenshot taken from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunlight, which attributes it to Nick84 - File:Solar_spectrum_ita.svg, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=24648395
Image 3 is from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electromagnetic_absorption_by_water, which attributes it to the Wikimedia Commons.