23 50








% Protected

Malawi’s strong stance against wildlife trafficking combined with its excellent leadership protecting the wild landscapes that remain set a strong basis for hope in this southern African region. Still, an immense and growing population, expanding sugar plantations, and climate change continue to strain Malawi’s wild ecology.


Malawi's Ecology

At the southern end of the Rift Valley, Lake Malawi glitters, a sapphire beneath the African sky. And when it comes to natural value, it is no exaggeration to compare this body of water to a precious gem for it is the most biodiverse fresh water lake in the world. Its waters are also important for they nourish the surrounding human and wildlife communities in Malawi’s arid landscapes.

Rhino, leopards, and African buffalo are found here, but their populations have diminished as a consequence of a fragmented landscape given over to agriculture, both subsistence and industrial. Climate change also threatens to upend the delicate balance of nature that sustains Malawi’s human populations. Increasing grassroots support for nature in Malawi and linking this to strong commitments by the international community will help to restore nature in this country.

Half (Mission Achieved)

Ecologically intact & protected landscapes comprise 50% or more of this country.

Can Reach Half

Intact landscapes lacking protected status comprise 50% or more of this country.

Could Be Restored

Between 20-40% of landscapes are still ecologically intact.


Less than 20% of the natural ecology of this area is intact.


Frankfurt Zoological Society

We conserve wildlife and ecosystems focusing on protected areas and outstanding wild places.

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The Nature Needs Half movement is only as strong as its member organizations. Discover more about the individuals and organizations who have committed to protecting 50% of the planet by 2050.
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Sunset on Lake Malawi.
Lake Malawi National Park

Hundreds of fish species swarm the clear waters of this protected area which could benefit from increased levels of ecotourism.

Malawi Mulanje Mountain Forest Reserve
Mulanje Mountain Forest Reserve

The Mulanje cypress once covered the slopes of this towering peak, but has been so heavily logged it is now endangered. This area is its last refuge. 

Frolicking zebras. Photo by Jeff Lemond.
Nyika National Park

Rich in zebras, bushbuck, leopards, orchids, and other wildflowers, this high altitude park is also an important watershed for the surrounding areas.

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