Hero Rat That Sniffed Out Over 70 Landmines Retires

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A rat named Magawa, who is credited with saving lives, is retiring after a five-year career of sniffing out landmines in Cambodia.

“With mixed feelings, we announce that PDSA Gold-medalist Magawa will be retiring this month. Although still in good health, he has reached a retirement age and is clearly starting to slow down,” APOPO, the group that trained the African giant pouched rat, tweeted Friday.

Magawa detected 38 items of exploded ordinances and 71 landmines, according to the announcement from APOPO.

He was born in November of 2014 and began his career in 2016 after training in APOPO’s research center in Tanzania.

Read more at The Hill.

{Matzav.com}

2 COMMENTS

  1. Rats are not heros, neither can they be credited with saving lives, nor do they reach retirement age. All they do is sniff, and Hashem has given them the intelligence needed to serve the human race.

    • The rat got a medal for animal service which the UK has and it has been awarded to many animals, most of them dogs. Of course the animal is an animal, but this bring attention to the organization’s work. Have you ever been in Cambodia? Let me fill you in on the details. There was a civil war (“Khmer Rouge” if you recall) and most of the country is filled with landmines. The military, as well as foreign military, UN troops and specialized contractors, at a point have combed through the country with skilled operators and equipment, and within a year or so have mapped it all, and put up signs “DANGER” “DO NOT ENTER”. Then the army’s ordnance removers would come clean it up, but that takes time — years — since the whole country is like that. However the owner of the patch of land and his family still have to eat, what do you think they do? They take a risk and plant the field, then harvest it. They tell their children not to come and help, they show the “DANGER” sign, then they cross the wire. Some of them die or are left crippled, and of course their family is even worse-off, and then the wife or the older child takes the next risk.

      This charity trains rats, which are lightweight and can step over mines (dogs are heavier). They very quickly identify where exactly the mines are, so that only a few square meters of land are avoided (while awaiting for the military to come) and they can eat every day.

      You don’t have to donate to them or credit Magawa the rat with saving human lives, although it did, but please don’t make light of something serious (may you never imagine such anguish) and let the Non Jews who wish to, support the rat training organization. If they’ve never heard about it, they won’t donate. This work does make a difference.

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