THE GREAT WILDEBEEST MIGRATION OF THE SERENGETI
THE GREAT WILDEBEEST MIGRATION OF THE SERENGETI
The Serengeti wildebeest migration is an annual cycle of events involving three protected areas- Ngorongoro and Serengeti in Tanzania and the Maasai Mara in Kenya. The entire migration process is essentially controlled by the pattern of rainfall which in turn depends on the movement of the Intertropical Convergency Zone (ITCZ) zone belt.
As the first rains start arriving in the short grass plains of the Ngorongoro and Serengeti early in November, The Wildebeest populations accompanied by large herds of Zebra and some herds of other antelopes, start arriving these areas late in November or early December, These migrating wildlife species will stay in the short grass plains south and east of Seronera including the northern part of Ngorongoro Conservation Area through January, February and March during which time, the majority of females will give birth to young ones.
When the grassing condition of the short grass plains has deteriorated, these migrating wildebeests, zebras and other antelopes start moving westwards into the woodland zone of the Serengeti, where much of the grass is still green and abundant water supply. By May the bulk of wildebeest migrant is widespread in the western part of the Serengeti. From here, they then start moving northwards crossing the Grumeti River.
In July, the migration continues to move northwards, passing through the Grumeti and Ikorongo Game Reserves and by August the majority of wildebeests, Zebra and other migrating antelopes have already crossed the Mara River in the north heading for Maasai Mara in Kenya. In mid-August the migration is already in Maasai Mara where it stays until at the end of October, when it starts heading south towards Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Conservation area through western Loliondo Game Controlled area.
By the end of November, the migration is again back in the short grass plains of the Ngorongoro and Serengeti grazing on the green grass which follows the first rains on the short grass plains. Then the cycle begins again.
What month is the wildebeest migration?
The migration moves down the eastern side of Tanzania’s Serengeti into these sweet short-grass plains. The wildebeest settle in the southern plains between January and April as there’s lots of food. In late March or April and May the “long” or heavy rains set in.
How many wildebeest migrate in the Serengeti?
1.5 million Wildebeest
- The Great Migration sees over 1.5 million wildebeest, 200,00 zebra and a host of other antelope travelling cross country.
- Between January and March, half a million wildebeest are born each year in the Serengeti.
Which is better Serengeti or Masai Mara?
The Serengeti is vast, covering a good 30 000 square kilometres, while the Masai Mara is much smaller at 1 510 square kilometres. … The more north of the Serengeti you travel, the more similar it becomes to the Masai Mara, which has a higher density of trees and a much more hilly and undulating landscape
Why do zebras travel with wildebeest?
The reason why zebra and wildebeest graze in harmony together is because they each eat different parts of the same type of grass. Because wildebeest have no natural leader, the migrating herd often splits up into smaller herds that circle the main, mega-herd, going in different directions.
What is the best time of year to visit the Serengeti?
The best time to visit the Serengeti National Park is in the Dry season (from late June to October). This period offers the best wildlife viewing in general – with the wildebeest migration as its absolute highlight. Wildlife viewing is good throughout the year, but certain areas are better at specific times
Where’s the best place to see the wildebeest migration? Kenya or Tanzania?
Each destination is good at completely different times of the year. The migration is usually active in the Tanzania’s Serengeti for 9 months.
If you’re planning a migration safari then decide on either Kenya or Tanzania.
Why do wildebeest need to migrate?
Why do the animals migrate? What the animals are in essence doing is following the rains in search of lush new grass. Taking advantage of the strongly seasonal conditions, the wildebeest are spending the wet season on the plains in the south-east, and the dry season in the woodlands of the north-west.
Which is better Serengeti or Ngorongoro?
The walls of the crater rim are covered by the montane forests with the most common ones are the Peacock flowers and highland trees. Ngorongoro crater is well-known for its high concentration of wildlife worldwide with its per capita being the highest compared to Serengeti national park.
How many days do you need in Serengeti?
We recommend three to four days for a full Serengeti experience. With so much to see, more days are better than too few.
Is the wildebeest migration a wonder of the world?
The Great Wildebeest Migration is one of the Seven New Wonders of the World. This immense movement only happens between the Serengeti National park in Tanzania and Maasai Mara National reserve in Kenya during July through October. They move majorly in search for greener pastures.