A journey to discover the people who change our world.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A Reconsideration of Rats

Rats and Clare don’t generally make a pretty combination, but this week I have been reconsidering my stance. In the space of a week, I have heard about an organisation in Mozambique, called APOPO, three times.

APOPO trains “Hero Rats’, African Giant Pouched Rats, to detect landmines. With an advanced sense of smell, but still light enough that they do not detonate the mines, the rats are able to cheaply, but effectively, clear large areas of land in Mozambique,- a country still riddled with the legacy of civil war. But there is more- the rats can also be used to sniff out disease and are being currently used to detect TB.

I got to see the rats in action when documentary maker Simon Reeve visited APOPO on his recent Tropic of Capricorn adventures, as broadcast on BBC.

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