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Bats and the Law:

What you need to know

Protected Species

This includes any species (mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian, invertebrate, fish, fungi or plant) – in a protected area (a national park, wildlife reserve or forest reserve). This means that in protected areas, all bat species are protected by law. Killing, injuring, possession or dealing of a protected species holds a penalty of a fine of up to K5,000,000 and/or up to ten years in prison

Endangered Species

Endangered species are protected anywhere in Malawi, this means outside protected areas as well as inside them. Under the NPWA many species are recorded as endangered including:

(I) Any mammal species categorized as endangered in the IUCN Red list of Threatened Species.

(2) Any mammal species listed in Appendix II of the CITES.

(3) Any of the mammal species listed in the NPWA

NPWA Listed Species

Under the NPWA many species are Listed including:

(I) Any mammal species categorized as critically endangered in the IUCN Red list of Threatened Species.

(2) Any mammal species listed in Appendix I of the CITES.

(3) Any of the mammal species listed in the NPWA under Section III

The penalty for killing, injuring, possession or dealing of an endangered species is up to 30 years in jail, with the option of a fine of up to K15,000,000, but no option of a fine if it is listed.

             Download a printable leaflet about bats and the Law in Malawi.

The National Parks and Wildlife Act of Malawi (NPWA) was amended in 2018 to increase the protection offered to wildlife with an increased maximum penalty for wildlife crime to up to 30 years in prison.

The Act lists species in three categories:

           Protected Species;

           Endangered Species and

           NPWA Listed Species.

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