Morning and evening circadian oscillators control the bimodal activity of Drosophila in light-dark cycles. The lateral neurons evening oscillator (LN-EO) is important for promoting diurnal activity at dusk. We found that the LN-EO autonomously synchronized to light-dark cycles through either the cryptochrome (CRY) that it expressed or the visual system. In conditions in which CRY was not activated, flies depleted for pigment-dispersing factor (PDF) or its receptor lost the evening activity and displayed reversed PER oscillations in the LN-EO. Rescue experiments indicated that normal PER cycling and the presence of evening activity relied on PDF secretion from the large ventral lateral neurons and PDF receptor function in the LN-EO. The LN-EO thus integrates light inputs and PDF signaling to control Drosophila diurnal behavior, revealing a new clock-independent function for PDF.