BoingBoing posted this video above of an example of specially trained rats that can sniff out landmines in Africa. The rats are lightweight and won’t trip a landmine if they find one and have the same scent sensitivity as landmine-searching dogs.

Rats get a bad reputation here in NYC, but I’ve always found them a bit fascinating. If you want to read a really, really fascinating book about the rat’s contribution to the history of New York City, go and pick up Rats: Observations on the History and Habitat of the City’s Most Unwanted Inhabitants. It’s one of my favorite books!