lmost everyone has ordered an item from Amazon at one point or another, but most people aren't buying objects to help them with their scientific experiments. Then again, scientists' brains don't exactly work like most people's.
After one Twitter user found a hidden gem of an Amazon review written by a scientist, the hashtag #reviewforscience took over Twitter — and it was as delightful as it was educational.
It all started when Robyn Womack — a scientist studying circadian rhythms in wild birds — came across this review for tea strainers.
Someone named John Birch had left the review, making it clear that he did not use the tea strainers for tea.
“To be honest these were not being used to strain tea but in a zoology experiment involving ants,” he wrote. “Suffice to say that the strainers worked well. Basically ants from one colony were inside the strainers which were then placed in another colony. The holes were small enough to prevent ants from getting in (or out) but large enough to provoke a response from the two groups.”
Of course, Twitter made its jokes:
How could it resist?
This was clearly not the intended use for the tea strainers. And yet, they worked so perfectly for the ant experiment.
Some people were even inspired to make their own tea strainer/ant experiment tool purchase.
The discovery was incredible all on its own, but then more scientists started to respond with their own alternative uses for everyday objects.
Before long, the hashtag #reviewforscience started trending.
For instance, you might use dental floss to brush your teeth, but it’s apparently also great for collecting small lizards.
And this thermometer just happens to be the perfect size for a lizard’s cloaca! (That’s basically its butthole, BTW.)
It wasn’t all lizard-related tools, though…