All Irish bat species are legally protected under both domestic and European legislation. Under Irish law (Wildlife Act 1976 and Wildlife (Amendment) Act 2000) it is an offence to intentionally harm a bat or disturb its resting place. Under European law (EU Habitats Directive) all Irish bat species are listed in Annex IV and are strictly protected wherever they occur. One Irish species, the Lesser Horseshoe Bat (Rhinolophus hipposideros) is also listed in Annex II of the directive. Annex II includes species whose conservation requires the designation of Special Areas of Conservation (SACs).