Landmine-sniffing rat Magawa ends years of hard work in Cambodia

Cambodia Rat Hero Retires
Posted at 8:07 PM, Jun 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-07 02:18:54-04

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AP) — After five years of sniffing out land mines and unexploded ordnance in Cambodia, Magawa is retiring.

The African giant pouched rat has been the most successful rodent trained and overseen by a Belgian nonprofit, APOPO, to find land mines and alert his human handlers so the explosives can be safely removed.

Magawa has cleared more than 1.5 million square feet of land, sniffing out 71 land mines and 38 items of unexploded ordnance.

In retirement, he will live in his same cage as before and follow the same daily routine — he just won’t be going out to the minefields anymore.