Rats As Heroes

Watch this phenomenal video and marvel that this man has found a “simple” solution to a complex and horrific problem.

Landmines continue to destroy millions of lives years after. Bart Weetjens has trained Giant Pouched Rats to effectively detect explosives in minute amounts, as well as tuberculosis.

When was the last time you thought of a rat as a heroe? When people hear the word rat, associations that spring to mind are more along the line of “Bubonic Plague.”

This interview, in Frontline WORLD (with Alexis Bloom), explains the biggest challenge for this project:

The main challenge for APOPO is to replicate this on a huge scale. We get lots of demands from all over the world — Lebanon, Afghanistan, Libya, Senegal, all the eleven Great Lakes region countries [of Africa], but also Asian counties like Sri Lanka, Cambodia — we cannot comply with all these requests. We will be happy to be able this year to start a second operation. So it’s like a drip on a hot plate. Well, not really, because what we do makes a difference, but it goes way too slow. So if we could make this a profitable business, owned locally and made in a sustainable way, we could make a much bigger impact. 

See this online brochure for more information.


About CarolWiebe

Art entices, inspires, and delights me. Art is a vehicle for laughter, tears, wonder, enlightenment--taking me on a constant path of discovery. You can't say that about housework (except, perhaps, for the crying part).
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2 Responses to Rats As Heroes

  1. elena says:

    This is amazing Carol! My heart is loving rats!!!

    • Carol Wiebe says:

      I know what you mean, Elena ~ and that is pretty strange for me.

      Rats are universally despised, and then along comes this man who trains them to serve humans in such a life-saving way. One could argue that the rats are only doing it for the food reward, but the same could be said for many human endeavours where the pay check is the only real incentive to keep running in the rat race.

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