Segments in this Video

Remaining Landmines (04:37)


Mozambique is littered with landmines that frequently hurt citizens. Bart Weetjens wants to train rats to smell dynamite. Pregnant females will only give birth in tunnels they dig themselves.

Training Process (04:13)

Rats are conditioned to associate the TNT smell with food rewards. Over 100 people work at APOPO. The company is working to train rats to detect tuberculosis in human saliva.

Business Plan (04:16)

Electronic noses cannot isolate what the rats smell. Alvin Hall challenges APOPO to find another source of funding and create an endowment.

Six Months Later (04:54)

Workers use rats in the early morning hours to detect land mines in Mozambique. APOPO creates a policy where foundations can name their own rat. Credit Suisse partners with APOPO.

Rebuilding Cities (03:53)

Two men using rats can double the amount of land cleared. Fragmentation mines exist in the fields. Mabalane District will soon have electricity for the first time since the civil war.

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Hero Rats

Part of the Series : Helping Social Entrepreneurs
DVD (Chaptered) Price: $129.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $194.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $129.95



They’re called Hero Rats. Can rats help clear Africa’s landmines? Landmines – brutal and indiscriminate weapons – are depressingly common in the developing world. Can the highly developed sense of smell of rats help to clear this scourge? In this episode of Helping Social Entrepreneurs, Alvin Hall is advising Apopo, the social enterprise behind this remarkable idea, how to secure their financial future. We travel to Mozambique where we visit the largest remaining mine field in the country. There, Apopo are drawing on the rats’ remarkable sense of smell and are training them to sniff out the TNT in mines. We already had filmed them being trained in Tanzania and now it was time to see them at work in Mozambique. One of the biggest hindrances to development in rural Mozambique is tghe presence, or even just the suspected presence, of a mine. This was the legacy of Mozambique’s brutal civil war, which lasted more than 15 years, led to hundreds of thousands of deaths and left an estimated three million unexploded mines.

Length: 22 minutes

Item#: BVL188145

Copyright date: ©2018

Closed Captioned

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