This brave animal is a hero of the rat race – honored with the highest animal valor award for tracking down deadly land mines and explosives in Cambodia.
Magawa, an African rat with giant bags, has secured 141,000 square meters of severely degraded soil – the equivalent of 20 football fields – and found 39 land mines and 28 other explosives.
Magawa was trained as a HeroRAT by the Belgian charity APOPO and is the first rat to win a PDSA prize for valor and the first non-bitch to win the gold medal.
His tiny medal was officially presented to him by PDSA boss Jan McLoughlin via a live link between Cambodia and the UK.
She said, “Magawa’s dedication, skill and bravery are an exceptional example.
“Cambodia estimates that between 1975 and 1998 between four and six million landmines were laid.
“Every discovery he makes reduces the risk of injury or death for the local people.”
Britain previously funded a giant rat training program to find thousands of buried landmines in Mozambique.
The initiative was part of a new £ 5 million demining program by the UK Department for International Development that lasted three years.