Wildebeest Migration – Serengeti Of Tanzania To Masai Mara Of Kenya

Wildebeest Migration - Serengeti Of Tanzania

Great Migration In East Africa

It is one of the world’s most spectacular and thrilling display of wildlife behaviour. Great Migration also known as the great movement involves the massive trek of million plus wildebeest from Serengeti in Tanzania northwards into Masai Mara Reserve in Kenya. The migration takes place every year with the animal’s primal instincts guiding them towards greener pastures following the climatic rain fall patterns over the Serengeti-Maasai Mara eco system. For the travels planning to visit Kenya, the wildebeest migration usually takes place from mid-July this is when the migration typically starts proper with the larger herds of wildebeest starting the move into Masai Mara. The migration takes place till end of August then it starts to decline in mid-September, therefore, we recommend travellers to book early in advance reason being that during this period, the park is flooded with lots of tourists and most of the accommodations get filled up. Therefore, booking early helps secure the place for you.

The wildebeest migration varies in number every year, past migrations have seen up to 1.5 million wildebeest, close to a million Zebra and large numbers of others animals undertake the long trek from Serengeti in Tanzania joining Maasai mara in Kenya. As they Cross the Mara River, they encounter some challenges most especially brought with danger as they cross the crocodile infested Mara River and Talek rivers along the way, during which many cannot escape the giant Nile crocodiles lying in water and the shores, outside the water, there also predators waiting for prey. Thus, many wildebeests, Zebras and others die during the massive trek.
A Guide to The Wildebeest Migration
Travelers planning a safari to Kenya often have many questions related to the wildebeest Migration in Kenya. Listed below are some of the questions to guide you through.

what is the best time to visit Masai Mara to see the wildebeest Migration? Masai mara is best visited all year round, but the migration period starts mid-July to late August as the best time to see the huge and massive movement of millions of wildebeest in to Mara area. Also keeping in mind that a gradual event that places over several weeks at different locations along the Serengeti Masai Mara border. The migration starts in mid-July when you see some flocks of animals nearing the Mara but haven’t crossed yet, the epic month is from August when the wildebeest migration is at its climax with millions plus wildebeests, Zebras and many animals flocking the mara river crossing in to Masai Mara conservation area.
From where and to where are is the wildebeest migration? The movement of the wildebeest dictated by number of factors including the climate, pasture and they are migrating during mating season and calving seasons. The wildebeest migration starts from Serengeti national park in Tanzania into Masai Mara conservation area in Kenya, the wildebeest are migrating through the year in a generally clockwise direction covering vast areas reaching into Southern, Central and Western Serengeti before the year long trek brings them to Masai Mara around July to August. Their journey back to Serengeti happens around late October when the numbers are seen staring to reduce.

How do you see the Wildebeest Migration? Most safaris activities for game viewing are done on Gave drive, therefore, you can see the migration during a safari game drive in the Masai Mara Game reserve which is conducted by expert driver guides who are well versed with several core points where the wildebeest cross the Mara River.
it may be necessary to access and station oneself at these points during a day-long outing in the reserve as some of the lodges and camps can be up to an hour’s drive from the ideal vantage points. Most tourists who come specially to see the migration consider seeing the river crossings a highlight of their tour and therefore want to spend enough time at these crossing points, which by the way tend to vary slightly every year while staying within a generally similar sub locality of the reserve.

Month By Month Wildebeest Migration
Many people think that the Great Migration only happens once in a year, but the migration is in fact an all-year-round event – offering different unique and exciting wildlife experience at various times of the year. The river crossing is one of the most requested events of the migration and usually coincide with the peak safari season, therefore the assumption that this is the only time of the year that the wildebeest are on the move or can be seen. This crossing usually occurs at Mara River around late July to August with parts of September and again on their return south, around the last two weeks of October through early November. Hence, the best times to track and see the annual wildebeest migration in Masai Mara. Below is a general breakdown of more or less where the herds are during the year, bearing in mind it’s difficult to predict the herds movement as it’s prompted by rain, which can be early, late or ‘on time’.
December To April
Depending on the rains, the herds can be seen south of Serengeti National Park between Ndutu plains and Ngorongoro plains. Hence, the best place to be during these four months is the far south of Serengeti. Around February, it is the calving season and there are high chances of witnessing a wildebeest birth. The herds move swiftly, in search of favourable grasslands to provide sustenance for the arrival of their young. The predator interaction is also most likely, as the lions and leopards are moving to this region to prey on the young and vulnerable calves. End of March/early April the herds move slowly and predictably to begin their northward journey, and many have left already and are in the central and even western Serengeti.

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