Landmine detecting ‘HeroRAT’ has passed away

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An intelligent and lifesaving rat named Magawa has passed away. Magawa was specially trained to detect landmines and explosives, and his proficiency at doing so earned him the title of “HeroRAT.”

On Monday, the non-profit organization, APOPO, announced Magawa’s passing, writing:

💔 It is with a heavy heart that we share the sad news that HeroRAT Magawa passed away peacefully this weekend.

Magawa was in good health and spent most of last week playing with his usual enthusiasm, but towards the weekend he started to slow down, napping more and showing less interest in food in his last days.

In November, Magawa celebrated his eighth birthday, an impressive age for a rat.

APOPO is mourning the special rat’s death:

All of us at APOPO are feeling the loss of Magawa and we are grateful for the incredible work he’s done.

And they celebrate his many accomplishments:

During his career, Magawa found over 100 landmines and other explosives, making him APOPO’s most successful HeroRAT to date. His contribution allows communities in Cambodia to live, work, and play; without fear of losing life or limb. In September 2020, he was formally presented with a PDSA Gold Medal – the highest award for gallantry an animal can receive. Last year when Magawa retired, HeroRAT Ronin took up the baton as the new adoption rat.

Adding:

It is thanks to all of you that Magawa will leave a lasting legacy in the lives that he saved as a landmine detection rat in Cambodia. Thank you all, from the bottom of our hearts, for your support during this difficult time.

Rest in peace Magawa.

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