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The Migration Path Calendar

The endless plains of east Africa are the setting for the world’s greatest wildlife spectacle - the 1.5 million plus animal ungulate (wildebeest) migrations. From the vast Serengeti plains to the champagne colored hills of Kenya’s Maasai Mara over 1.4 million wildebeest and 400,000 zebra and gazelle, relentlessly tracked by Africa’s great predators, migrate in a clockwise fashion over 1,800 miles each year in search of rain ripened grass.

There is no real beginning or end to a wildebeest's journey. Its life is an endless pilgrimage, a constant search for food and water.

The only beginning is at the moment of birth. An estimated 400,000 wildebeest calves are born during a six week period early each year - usually between late January and mid-March

DECEMBER, JANUARY, FEBRUARY, MARCH The Serengeti National Park / Ngorongoro Conservation Area is arguably the most impressive wildlife sanctuary in the world. During the months December through March the seemingly unending plains of the southern Serengeti and the Conservation Area are inhabited by enormous herds of wildebeest and zebra. The great herds graze on rain ripened grass.

In the calving season (late January through mid March) the herds concentrate at the Ndutu and Salei plains (Southern Serengeti / Ngorongoro Conservation Area) attracting the attention of predators like lion, cheetah and hyena.

During this period the migration is best observed from Ndutu Safari Lodge, Kusini Camp or any of several private tented camps used by mobile safaris such as our "Buena Vista Tours & Safaris". These include campsites in the Ndutu/Naabi area.

APRIL, MAY During the months April and May the depleted plains are unable to sustain the endless herds. The migration, sweeping west and north, moves from the short grass plains of the southern Serengeti / Ngorongoro Conservation Area to the long grass plains and woodland of the Serengeti’s western Corridor, almost to Lake Victoria.

This period is during the long rains and is considered off season for wildlife viewing in east Africa as roads are often impassable.

JUNE By the end of May the wildebeest have exhausted the Western Corridor’s best pastures and the herds must move further north. Entering the Lamai Wedge and the Maasai Mara breeding occurs May through June.

This is a transitional period between the rains and the dry season. The Mara Serena Lodge, Keekorok, Sarova Mara, Mara Sopa and Mara Simba are central, easily accessible lodges for viewing the migration at this time. Mara River Camp, Fig Tree among other Tented Camps are also options for those who would prefer luxury camping.

JULY, AUGUST, SEPTEMBER, OCTOBER. By July the countless herds have amassed along the swollen Mara River - a final barrier from the short sweet grasses of the Maasai Mara. Sometimes the crossing place they have chosen is shallow allowing the majority of animals to pass safely. In other areas the waters boil with drowning wildebeest and slashing crocodiles.

Between July and October the wildebeest reside in the Maasai Mara. This is the period to note for those who wish to catch up with the migration.

NOVEMBER The arrival of the short rains call the migration southward. As November ends the migration is making its way back to the southern Serengeti and early in the year they once again give birth. The circle of life is complete.

*Note - the migration is a natural event and the timing varies month by month; year by year.

BVS K 068 5 Days Gnu migration Safari
This Gnu migration safari which will be featuring the wildebeest migration is focused on our migration calendar, so for those interested mostly in migration, you can book this safari between the months of July to October. In this 5 days safari, we will be featuring the Maasai mara game reserve migration of the wildebeests, Evening Safari briefing. Dinner and overnight at a Hotel. Accommodation in Maasai Mara will depend on the area where the Gnus are in massive...more


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