Magawa, Rat Wey Dey Detect Land Mines Don Win Animal Bravery Award

One African giant rat don collect award, ogbonge gold medal wey dem de call Animal Bravery Award for im work to dey detect land mines.

Magawa smell out 39 landmines and 28 weapons wey never explode for im career.

Na di UK veterinary charity PDSA present am with Gold Medal for “life-saving devotion to duty, for di location and clearance of deadly landmines insdie Cambodia”.

Tori be say up to six million landmines dey di southeast Asian kontri.

Magawa And Im Animal Bravery Award

Dem write ontop di PDSA’s Gold Medal “For animal gallantry or devotion to duty”. Of di 30 animal wey don collect di award, Magawa na di first rat.

Di seven-year-old rodent collect training from di Belgium-registered charity Apopo, wey based in Tanzania and don dey raise di animals – wey dem dey call HeroRATs – to detect landmines and tuberculosis since di 1990s. Di animals dey collect certificate afta one year of training.

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“To receive this medal na really honour for us,” Apopo chief executive Christophe Cox tell Press Association news agency. “But also na big tin for di people for Cambodia, and all di people around di world wey dey suffer from landmines.”

According to Apopo, Magawa – wey dem born and raise for Tanzania – weigh 1.2kg (2.6lb) and na 70cm (28in) long. While dat one big well-well in terms of many oda rat species, Magawa still small enough and light enough to not trigger mines if e waka ontop dem.

Dem dey train di rats are to detect chemical compound wey dey di explosives, meaning say dem dey ignore scrap metal and fit search for mines more quickly. Once dem find explosive, dem go scratch di top to alert dia human co-workers.


Magawa dey capable of searching field wey be di size of tennis court in just 20 minutes – something Apopo tok say go take pesin with metal detector between one and four days.

E dey work for just half an hour a day in di mornings and dey near im retirement age, but PDSA director general Jan McLoughlin say im work with Apopo dey “truly unique and outstanding”.

“Magawa work directly dey save and change di lives of men, women and children wey dey impacted by these landmines,” she tell di Press Association. “Every discovery e make dey reduce di risk of injury or death for local people.”

According to di mine-clearing NGO di HALO Trust, Cambodia don record more dan 64,000 casualties and some 25,000 amputees due to landmines since 1979. Dem lay many of dem di kontri civil war for di 1970s and 1980s.


The Author


Tori4Town is the print name for one of the authors of the Tori4Town news platform. An engineering student who derives satisfaction writing about trending news stories.

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