Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department



Local Protected Wild Animals

Hong Kong has a wide variety of habitats which contribute to the diversity of local fauna especially birds and insects. However, wild mammals are declining in number because of the degradation or loss of habitats caused by urbanization. The government's increasing concern with the protection of the natural environment has been demonstrated both by legislation and by the activities of its conservation staff.

Terrestrial Mammals

Bats are common in the rural areas. Some species, like the Himalayan Leaf-nosed Bat, may inhabit abandoned old village houses. Sometimes they could be found even in built-up areas. Most of them feed on insects and natural fruits. All bats are protected by law in Hong Kong.

[Ferret Badger]
Ferret Badger
[Leopard Cat]
Leopard Cat

Mask Palm Civets, Ferret Badgers Small Indian Civets and Leopard Cats can occasionally be found in the countryside.


[Mask Palm Civet]

Mask Palm Civet 

[Small Indian Civet]

Small Indian Civets
[Eurasian Otter]
Eurasian Otter


In the seashore areas of the northern New Territories, Eurasian Otter and the mongooses are sometimes seen. They are good swimmers. First recorded in the 1990s, the Small Asian Mongoose is now inhabiting  Country Parks which are far away from seashores.


(Quicktime Movie 6.9Mb)

[Barking Deer]

Barking Deer
(Quicktime Movie 2.8Mb)


(Quicktime Movie 6.9Mb)

To view the movie, please download Quicktime

Barking Deer, squirrels, Chinese Porcupines, and Chinese Pangolins may still be seen in some remote areas.

[Chinese porcupine]
Chinese porcupine

Except human, macaques are the only wild primates found in Hong Kong. Rhesus monkeys, longtailed monkeys and their hybrids can easily be found in the areas adjacent to Kowloon Reservoir. The population is about 2100 in 2008 and increases at a rate of about 5.5 - 7.8% annually. AFCD is carrying out field trials of contraceptive treatment on wild monkeys for population control.

Wild pigs are the largest wild animal in Hong Kong and are not protected under law. They are often found in the rural areas in Sai Kung, Tai Lam Chung and Sha Tau Kok. They occasionally cause damage to farm crops and lawns of golf courses. Villagers and members of the public may report to the police when wild pigs are causing threats to life and property.


[Wild Pig]
Wild Pig


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Amphibians and Reptiles

Hong Kong has over 108 species of amphibians and reptiles. Most snakes in Hong Kong are harmless and the numbers of known bites by highly venomous snakes and of death from snakebites are very few. The only protected snake in Hong Kong is the Burmese Python (Python bivittatus) (non-venomous) while all turtles, terrapins and tortoises are protected under the Wild Animals Protection Ordinance (Cap. 170).

To view the movie, please download Quicktime

[Burmese Python]
Burmese Python
[Green Turtle]

Green Turtle
(Quicktime Movie 6.9Mb)

Three species of amphibians are protected under the Wild Animals Protection Ordinance, they are the Romer's Tree Frog (Liuixalus romeri), the Hong Kong Cascade Frog (Hong Kong Torrent Frog) (Amolops hongkongensis) and the Hong Kong Newt (Hong Kong Warty Newt) (Paramesotriton hongkongensis).

Romer's Tree Frog
[Hong Kong Cascade Frog]
Hong Kong Cascade Frog (Hong Kong Torrent Frog)
[Hong Kong Newt]
Hong Kong Newt (Hong Kong Warty Newt)

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[Bird wing Butterfly]
Bird wing Butterfly

Hong Kong is rich in insect fauna. There are about 200 species of butterflies and over 100 species of dragonflies being recorded in the territory. Most of them are brilliantly coloured and they are the most attractive flying creatures other than birds. The Birdwing Butterfly, which is very rare in Hong Kong, is the only protected insect species under the Wild Animals Protection Ordinance.

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Around 550 species of birds have been recorded in Hong Kong. Most of them are passage migrants in Spring and Autumn, and wintering visitors. Hong Kong has a variety of habitats which provide a rich supply of food and shelter for these birds. All wild birds are protected under the Wild Animal Protection Ordinance (Cap. 170).


 Little Egret 

Chinese Bulbul
Spotted Dove
Scaly-breasted Munia


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Protecting the Wild Animals

In order to protect the invaluable treasure of the local wildlife and their habitats, the Government has enacted the 'Wild Animals Protection Ordinance (Cap. 170)' in 1976 to make provision for the conservation of wild animals, and for purposes connected therewith.

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What kinds of wild animals are protected?

Wild animals specified in 'Schedule 2' of the Wild Animals Protection Ordinance are protected by law. Any person who contravenes the regulations of the Ordinance shall be liable on conviction to a maximum fine of HK$100,000 and to imprisonment for 1 year.

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Last Review Date : 26 February 2018