Most landmines detected by a rat
71 total number
Cambodia (Trapaeng Sangkae Khang Kaeut)

The most landmines detected by a rat over a career is 71, discovered by Magawa, an African giant pouched rat from Tanzania trained and deployed by Belgian nonprofit APOPO. He detected all of the mines in the Cambodian provinces of Siem Reap and Preah Vihear between January 2017 and May 2021 , at which point, aged seven, he was retired from duty.

During his service, Magawa additionally detected 38 other pieces of ERW (explosive remnants of war) including unexploded mortars and grenades.

According to APOPO, one rat can search an area the size of a tennis court in 20 minutes, an area that could take a human between one and four days. Small and light enough not to trigger the mines, the rats are trained to sniff out a chemical compound in the explosives.

In Sep 2020, Magawa received the Gold Medal from the PDSA (People's Dispensary for Sick Animals), an animal bravery award for the civilian sector which is seen as an equivalent to the George Cross medal. Magawa was the 29th recipient of the award and the first not to be a dog.