Despite a growing interest in the development of mine detection technologies, the removal of many anti-personnel landmines and explosive remnants of war remains the work of professional personnel who work with well-trained animals. In the past, the Canadian Landmine Foundation (CLMF) has funded the training of mine detection dogs, but recently rodents have been added to the growing list of animal landmine detectors. Together with their trainers, these animals make explosives detection more safe for all involved.
Bart Weetjens has been particularly successful in training rodents to help clear landmines. To date, he has helped clear more than eight million square miles of land and has uncovered more than 1,000 unexploded ordinates. Financial Times online magazine recently published Bart’s story of success and inspiration. Please click here to read his story and to learn more about the use of rodents in mine-detection and clearing efforts.