Malawi’s Nyika National Park and Vwaza Marsh Wildlife Reserve are important components of the Malawi-Zambia Transfrontier Conservation Area. Together, these 4000 square kilometres of land are vital to the ecosystem, the wildlife and the people of Malawi.
The high-lying areas of Nyika, much of which sits over 2500 metres above sea level, is reminiscent of Scotland, with dramatic mists that roll in on winter’s mornings and much rainfall that gives the region its unique appeal. In summer the rolling hills burst with wildflowers and orchids, many of which are found nowhere else in the world. Nyika boasts 213 different species of wild orchids species, 30 which are endemic to the park. It is a sight unlike any seen in most other African game parks.
In 2022 a co-management agreement will be signed between Peace Parks Foundation and the Government of Malawi to co-manage both Nyika National Park and Vwaza Marsh Wildlife Reserve. This is tremendously exciting as it means that significant development and protection of the regions can continue.
A critical mountain water catchment area for the country, Nyika, aptly meaning ‘where the water comes from’ contributes 10 % of all water flowing into Lake Malawi – the 9th largest and 3rd deepest freshwater lake in the world. The protection of Nyika National Park is vital to ensure the aquatic resilience of this water catchment area, upon which at least 9 million people are directly dependent. With strengthened governance and innovative management partnerships, including involvement from communities, this freshwater source can be protected for future generations.
To bolster water security in the park, dams will continue to be rehabilitated from the effects of erosion and scouring of spillways. Protecting the plateau and ensuring sustainable provision of water and alternative livelihoods to rural communities is vital for the future of the communities that live in the regions.
Keep watching Peace Parks TV to follow the exciting changes in Nyika National Park and Vwaza Marsh Wildlife Reserve.