This tongue-in-cheek hashtag is spreading knowledge and delight on social media.
Every once in a while, a hashtag comes along that is so pure and delightful, you wonder how you survived on the internet without it.
#RateASpecies is that hashtag.
It's a tongue-in-cheek hashtag that zoos, aquariums, and wildlife centers have been using to write humorous Amazon-style "reviews" of different animals. It's a silly, carefree way to learn real facts about the amazing creatures around us.
And in the vein of Dog Rates, every animal receives four stars because every animal is pretty much perfect. Trust and believe — this is koala-ty content.
Here are some of the animals coming out on top, including a few endangered, vulnerable, and otherwise surprising species.
1. Am I the last person to learn of tree kangaroos? And, if so, why didn't any of you tell me about these delightful but vulnerable creatures?
2. The tree kangaroo is not to be confused with this cuddly cutie: the red panda.
Bonus points to Minnesota Zoo for the excellent wordplay.
3. If you give a hoot about owls (and you should), consider doing something about light pollution.
4. This big cat is a gentle giant most of the day. I'm not lion.
5. Don't be alarmed. This is a mola mola, not a swimming nightmare come to life.
And if you stare long enough, it's actually kind of cute.
6. Because even creepy-crawlies deserve love. Four stars (and four terrifying screams) for your local scorpion.
7. If super floofs are more your scene, look no further than the snow leopard.
8. Or better yet, this seafaring floof: the penguin.
9. If you need something that hauls, climbs, and rests like no other, maybe a bear is more your speed.
10. This well-dressed epaulette shark has a unique look that can go from day to night.
And from water to land. Seriously!
11. I don't know how this made the list. This list is for animals — not very happy plant life!
12. Now jellyfish. This is more like it. Did you know they're 95% water?
13. Finally, an animal that's Instagram ready.
14. "Bats off" to these late-night party animals.
I'm so sorry about that attempt at wordplay. I will never be the Minnesota Zoo, and I recognize that now.
15. Nothing but respect for my predator.
Even after some ice cold seals left a pretty damning review.
16. Have you ever seen an unhappy bonobo? Probably not. And you probably never will.
17. Ain't no party like a lake sturgeon party cuz a lake sturgeon party has been going on for 150 million years.
Did your favorite fauna not make the cut? Join the party, and rate it yourself.
Because every now and then, it's possible to find pure, unadulterated delight on the internet. And if you can learn a few things along the way, it's as close to a four-star experience as you can get.