Hero Mine Detecting Rat, Magawa Died at Eight

The HeroRAT Magawa passed away peacefully last weekend, at the age of 8, announced Tuesday APOPO, a non-profit organisation that trains African giant pouched rats to save lives by detecting landmines.

According to APOPO, Magawa was in good health last week, but towards the weekend he started to slow down, napping more and showing less interest in food in his last days.

During his career, Magawa found over 100 landmines and other explosives, making him APOPO’s most successful HeroRat to date, APOPO said, adding that in September 2020, he was formally presented with a PDSA Gold Medal – the highest award for gallantry an animal can receive.

He has reduced the risk of injury or death for the people in Cambodia and allowed the communities to live, work and play without fear of losing life or limb in the free-mine land.

Magawa is an African giant pouched rat that was born in Tanzania. He grew up at APOPO's Training and Research centre in Tanzania where he learned how to find explosives using his amazing sense of smell. Magawa then moved to Siem Reap in Cambodia in 2016, where he began his successful career.

Last year when Magawa retired, HeroRAT Ronin took up the baton as the new adoption rat, APOPO said.

Source: Agency Kampuchea Press