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Bomb Sniffing Rats Coming to New Zealand

Bomb Sniffing Rats Coming to New Zealand

APOPO, the award-winning NGO that trains African giant pouched rats to detect landmines and tuberculosis, is pleased to announce a partnership with Australian-based Global Development Group (GDG) - allowing New Zealanders to make donations through GDG.

APOPO aims to work with GDG to build a community of New Zealand supporters who donate to the cause, raise awareness, and advocate for its work in providing innovative solutions for global problems and in inspiring positive social change.

To find out more visit APOPO at

To adopt a landmine detecting rat visit



APOPO is an award winning, non-profit International NGO that has developed an innovative method deploying African giant pouched rats, nicknamed “HeroRATs”, to detect landmines and tuberculosis using their extraordinary sense of smell.

APOPO’s headquarters, training and research center is based in Morogoro, Tanzania and the HeroRATs currently detect landmines in Cambodia, Mozambique and Angola, and will soon begin operations in Zimbabwe.

The HeroRATs are just one important asset in a comprehensive mine clearance toolbox that begins with gathering historical and geographical information about the task in hand (survey) before deploying a combination of machines, technicians (human deminers) with metal detectors, and of course the rats. It is the HeroRATs however that places APOPO apart from conventional methods due to their amazing landmine detection speed.

A HeroRAT can check the area of a tennis court in just 30 minutes, a job that would take a deminer with a metal detector between one and four days. Landmine clearance is an expensive undertaking and detection speed is a crucial factor in reducing costs and getting people back on their land as fast as possible. To date the HeroRATs have helped to clear over 21 million m2 of landmine contaminated land, and destroyed over 105,000 landmines and bombs in 6 countries, helping over 900,000 people reclaim their land and economic livelihoods.

The APOPO TB Detection HeroRATs operate in Tanzania, Mozamabique and soon Ethiopia. They have identified over 11,000 TB-positive patients missed by clinics in Tanzania and Mozambique. This has potentially halted over 81,000 further infections, and increased clinic detection rates by over 40%.

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