June 2014 - Wildebeest migration updates

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Nothing happening at the moment

27 Jun 2014 from Lemala Camps

Hi Carel We have not forgotten you. Just nothing happening at the moment. We are full so drives out every day. Think the beasties are swinging through the tree tops! Maybe your visit will change things! Cheers Mark

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Most have moved north west

26 Jun 2014 from Captain Joel J Fernandes

Hey Carel, back-end update I was in Lobo, most have moved NW from there about 5nm and the Seronera ones seem to be just relaxed there. Hope the images help. Joel

The wildebeest migration in Seronera - Image by Captain Joel J Fernandes
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Rare to have them both here

25 Jun 2014 from Encounter Mara

Morning Carel, news from Naibosho - we took a little drive out onto the plains, to celebrate Colin’s birthday it was amazing to see the amount of wildebeest flowing though. There must have been more that 3000! And they keep on coming! Around camp you can hear huge amounts of them and it looks like its starting, definitly a combination of the Serengeti and Loita migration - rare to have them both here at the same time! Have a fantastic day Kind regards Chala

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Still around the Seronera area

25 Jun 2014 from Lemala Camps

Central Serengeti update - They're still around the Seronera area and they are in difference groups and this evening there was a group right at our camp at Makoma Hill, they are still making a lot of "music" so all the clients are enjoying it. Thanks. Godwin - Lemala Ewanjan

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Smaller herd is stirring up a row

24 Jun 2014 from Captain Joel J Fernandes

Hey Carel - The back-end herd has parked off 1nm west of the Seronera airstrip. My pilots say the smaller herd is stirring up a row with them at Lobo airstrip now by just being on the runway every time we want to land!! The guides and park rangers there are doing a fantastic job, giving it everything, trying to get them off the strip for us to land and take-off safely. I had a passenger help take photos off my phone while coming into Seronera.‎ The good news is that they are heading west and then perhaps north so they will still cross the Mara Thanks and Regards,

The back end of the wildebeest migration - Image by Captain Joel J Fernandes
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Very large group between Seronera and Lobo

23 Jun 2014 from Lemala Camps

Serengeti Migration back-end update Hi Carel, I flew in from Arusha this morning to Kogatende and there is a very large group between Seronera and Lobo, they were well spread out and not on the move. Puts them 40km south (as the crow flies not as the wildebeest walks) from what I could see of the Mara River on approach, no activity on the river itself. It seems they will be at the river when you arrive next week, how did you know? Regards Mark

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Talek area is quiet at the moment

23 Jun 2014 from Governors' Camp

Masai Mara Migration update - This morning a large number of Wildebeest have arrived back into the Marsh, Musiara and Bila Shaka. These wildebeest and some Zebra have come down form the north east. On the walk this morning there were many wildebeest crossing the Olare Orok river and these will eventually arrive into the reserve. The Talek area is quiet a the moment. Some of these especially the ones from north east may well be from the Loita migration. We are ready for season! Regards Ariana

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New tiny cubs in the Marsh Pride of lions

20 Jun 2014 from Governors' Camp

Hi Carel - No migration news yet this morning, all the news coming out of the Mara is new tiny cubs for "marsh pride" of lions, will try to get some migration info for you. Very few wildebeest around us, a couple of nights ago there was rain which meant a lot moved down towards Topi Plains double crossing.Yesterday they were building up on Burrungat Plains but have yet to cross the Talek River, rain is holding there for the meantime. Keep well! Ariana – Governors’ Camp Collection

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Big main herd went further south

19 Jun 2014 from Captain Joel J Fernandes

Hey Carel Back-end update - the big main herd went further south of the eastern Grumeti from our last report and have scattered around the Seronera area. A smaller group is in and around the Lobo airstrip. I had a flight to Nairobi yesterday, flying over the Mara and the rains there have finally started. I don't know if it will be enough to compel the big herd to move North again. I hear that something like this happened once before about 5 years back, it is still early days so perhaps they will move north again soon! Thanks and Regards, Joel

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Crocodiles moving upstream

17 Jun 2014 from Governors' Camp

Back-end update While waiting for the Zebra to perhaps cross we counted 11 crocodile moving upstream to exactly the point these Zebra may well cross, it has been said that crocodiles are able pick up the slightest of vibrations and can sense very accurately timings movements of prey. I called the warden in Trans Mara and he told me that a large number of Wildebeest had crossed the sand river and were moving towards the Ongata ronkai and Burrangat areas, we could see from the top of Emarti that there were large herds of Wildebeest building up here and these we hear must have come through in the last 24 hours. Patrick - Governors Il Moran Camp

The wildebeest migration is moving towards the Ongata Ronkai and Burrangat areas - Image by Patrick Reynolds
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Rain pattern stirred the resident wildebeest

17 Jun 2014 from Governors' Camp

Morning Carel - front-end update We had 12 mm rain last night and in some areas perhaps a little heavier, this rain pattern stirred the resident wildebeest whereby many had moved away out from the Bila Shaka and Marsh areas towards the north flank of Rhino ridge. Pockets of Wildebeest have moved into the paradise plains area of topi flats near the main crossing point. An estimated 250 Zebra had crossed at the rocky crossing late yesterday evening from the trans Mara and one of them had been caught by a crocodile but it got away with a broken fetlock, I understand it was thrown over and over in the water by the crocodile, this morning further downstream about 2 kilometers there were an equal number of Zebra building waiting to cross from the trans Mara side although by 1.20 pm they were still in-situ. Ariana

The wildebeest migration assembling at Rhino Ridge - Image by Ariana Grammaticas
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The front end has arrived

12 Jun 2014 from Governors' Camp

Morning Carel, the front end has arrived, the view from tent 37 at Governors Camp this morning, it is a sea of wildebeest out there as the migration joins up with the resident wildebeest and covers the plains from the North East side of rhino ridge, Bila Shaka, Musiara Plains, North East and West of the Musiara Marsh and the Northern Masai Conservation Areas. Ariana, Governors Camp.

The wildebeest herds outside Governors Camp - Image by Ariana Grammaticas
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Small herd located west of Lobo

11 Jun 2014 from Captain Joel J Fernandes

Hi Carel So we got airborne out of Kogatende and decided to do a bit of recon for the missing 1.6 mill... and found them. There is a small herd 5nm west of Lobo still south of the river. And also found the huge, big main herd about 30nm NNE of Seronera‎ just by the upper Grumeti River. No idea which way they are heading really. I think the few random storms in and around Seronera may have thrown them off a little bit it seems.‎ Too high for photos this time. Thanks and Regards, Joel

This lucky Zebra just survived

11 Jun 2014

This lucky Zebra just survived, not sure how - to confirm the numbers are low on the western side at present both on the Serengeti and Masai Mara sides but we are predicting some crossings back and forth this year - so watch this space Both sides of the Mara River is key if you are serious about crossings, many other operators would try and make you choose between Kenya and Tanzania, the migration this year has again proven that you need to go to both sides of the Mara River! Thank you for the picture Mark - Lemala Camps! Carel

This Zebra had a close encounter with a crocodile and survived - Image by Mark Stroud
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Nothing in Kogatende

11 Jun 2014 from Captain Joel J Fernandes

Hey Carel Perhaps a useless update but I am in Kogatende at the moment and there is nothing here. We have too many conflicting reports from the ground at the moment. Some say they are a little bit west of Lobo‎ others a distance NE of Kogatende and some even say they are in the Mara. From the air, we haven't seen them since they left Fort Ikoma. There are just herds of Zebra around Grumeti and Sasakwa. Will keep you posted on the whereabouts when we find the 1.6 MILLION wildebeests! Joel

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Large gathering of wildebeest out near the Sand River

10 Jun 2014 from Lemala Camps

Carel, hope you are well, in from the guides, there is a large gathering of wildebeest out near the Sand River as of late yesterday. There will be crossings today and possibly tomorrow over the Sand towards the Mara's Talek. TANAPA had previously burnt this area so there is a good green flush which will keep them busy for about 48 hours. Some great pictures of a Zebra narrowly escaping a massive crocodile, I will send those through - Thanks Mark

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Lioness taking a wildebeest in the water

09 Jun 2014 from Governors' Camp

HI Carel, Here is the latest: Little Governors Camp guides yesterday saw many wildebeest and a crossing on the Talek River. There was a crossing with an estimated 5,000 at the Talek River with a Lioness taking a wildebeest in the water, water levels are low in the Talek at the Moment. I am also getting information from more guides who were at look out hill area, there were huge numbers of Wildebeest building up on the Burrangat plains and the Ongata ronkai, one expression was a “sea of wildebeest”.

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Back-end just left Fort Ikoma

07 Jun 2014 from Lemala Camps

Hi Carel A large herd of a few thousand wildebeest moved in to the area of Wongakuria yesterday. About 20 minutes from our camp. We guess they will slowly move towards the river today or tomorrow. I have dropped three pictures into your drop box from yesterday. The back-end just left Fort Ikoma according to our friends at Coastal but you should have received that from Joel directly, we see you soon! Regards Mark

The back end of the wildebeest migration has left Fort Ikoma - Image by Mark Stroud

Nature never fails to amaze me

05 Jun 2014

Rain in the Mara, good rain, so this is wonderful news for the Kenyan side of things, much needed new grass with the Loita migration having been in the Mara since June and the Serengeti migration on its way. Finally some good news for our friends in Kenya - now we just have to ask ourselves, how did the front-end of the migration know this, they are literally on the edge of the Mara and the rest are on their way! Nature never fails to amaze me - truly incredible, a sigh of relief all round! Carel

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Little rain in the central Serengeti

04 Jun 2014 from Lemala Camps

I had confirmation from a TFC pilot this morning that there is a very large group about 40km to the south of us, which puts them a little bit more than halfway between us and Lobo. There has been little rain in the central Serengeti that we have heard of so we suspect that the super herd is split into 3 or 4 major herds. So some of them have crossed and the other groups are between the western corridor and the north and between Lobo and the north. Mark

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Fort Ikoma‎ airstrip is over flowing with wildebeest!

02 Jun 2014 from Captain Joel J Fernandes

Migration coordinates: S 02 07 72 E 034 21 88, S 02 09 56 E 034 13 31 and S 02 04 59 E 034 37 57. Unfortunately we are not getting very good pictures. But at the moment, Fort Ikoma‎ airstrip is over flowing with wildebeests! Breath-taking really! We know some smaller groups are further north but the main herds still have a few weeks to go to get to the Mara River I would say! Thanks Carel Joel

The wildebeest migration has taken over Fort Ikoma - Image by Captain Joel J Fernandes

Lodges closest to the herd right now

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1 km

from herd

Chaka Camp

$ 279

per person per night

Chaka Camp, is a mobile Serengeti safari camp designed to be lightweight enough to move seasonally, is located in the Ndutu area from December through March. The camp relocates to Western Serengeti from May through June, and again to Northern Serengeti from July through November.

From December through March, the wildebeest migration moves in and out of the Ndutu area. Ndutu is located in Ngorongoro Conservation Area, just south of Serengeti National Park. Chaka Camp’s location provides easy access to prime game viewing areas around Lakes Ndutu and Masek. In addition to the almost two million wildebeest and zebra that move through the area each year, Ndutu is home to cheetah, lion, giraffe and hundreds of bird species. During February’s calving season, the wildebeest give birth to 8,000 babies a day.

From May through June, Chaka Camp relocates to Western Serengeti. The wildebeest migration is generally in this area during this time, and crossings over the Grumeti River are sometimes seen in this area. Access to Central Serengeti is also possible from this area as the drive is only two hours.

From July through November, Chaka Camp is located in Northern Serengeti. The camp is close to the Mara River, allowing easy access to several river crossing points in the area. During this time of year, the wildebeest migration is crossing the Mara River back and forth from Tanzania to Kenya. River crossings are common with crocodiles, hippos and large cats scattered throughout the area.

Follow the link the see the best time to visit Serengeti or visit our HerdTracker app. 

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1 km

from herd

Woodlands Camp

Price on Request

Tucked within a grassy corridor that links the Lake Ndutu area with the Moru Kopjes and Hidden Valley is the seasonal Woodlands Camp. During the calving season, this area is teaming with wildebeest as hundreds of thousands of pregnant females converge to give birth. While most properties are compacted in a central location, Woodlands Camp is slightly removed from the main tourist venue, allowing for more privacy without sacrificing access to this awe-inspiring event.

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2 km

from herd

Ndutu Safari Lodge

$ 256

per person per night

Ndutu Safari Lodge is situated in the south-eastern part of the Serengeti eco-system. Shaded by majestic acacia trees, each of the thirty four cottages, which are built of local materials, has a private verandah facing Lake Ndutu.

The Lodge is surrounded by indigenous trees and shrubs which encourage a host of birds and mammals to come right to your front door. Tucked well away from the busy tourist circuit, Ndutu offers peace and tranquillity far from the madding crowd. Spend some time with us and unwind. Relax to the rhythm of an African day as a myriad bird calls herald the rising sun. Stay close to the lodge and enjoy the resident wildlife or go for a drive and explore the range of habitats that lie within easy reach. After sunset return to the homely warmth and hospitality of Ndutu Safari Lodge.

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2 km

from herd

Lemala Ndutu

$ 556

per person per night

Perched on the edge of a permanent marsh, Lemala Ndutu is the ultimate amphitheater for the wildebeest migration between December and March.

9 suite tents of a very high specification are relocated from the Northern Serengeti to this stunning Ndutu site to capture the boundless drama that accompanies the migration. The migrating herds of over 1.5 million wildebeest and zebra begin to arrive in December and begin calving in February.

The camp is situated inside the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, near the border of Southern Serengeti, in what is perhaps the finest location in the whole of Ndutu because of its shady umbrella acacia trees and grass cover which reduces dust considerably and also attracts grazers. The camp offers fantastic views of the marsh whose permanent fresh waters attract an abundance of game including predators. The camp enjoys regular visits from resident wildlife ranging from lions, leopards,cheetahs and hyenas to elephant and giraffe. Lion hunts close to the camp are not uncommon.

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2 km

from herd

Camp Zebra

$ 495

per person per night

Like the animal it is named after, Camp Zebra follows the wildebeest migration to the northern part of the Serengeti National Park in June, July, August, September, October and November; and to the southern part of the park from December till March. Camp Zebra is closed from the middle of April till the end of May each year.

Camp Zebra consists of six accommodation tents, each of which can be used for single, double (or twin) or triple occupancy. Each sleeping tent consists of a bedroom area, dressing area and ensuite shower and toilet. The dressing area, shower and toilet are all “open air” so as to heighten the experience of living as one with your surroundings. Despite being able to enjoy some breathtaking views as you prepare yourself for the day ahead, privacy is still assured due to the clever design of our tents. As an added convenience, each tent is provided with sufficient electricity for lighting as well as for charging mobile telephones, cameras, tablets, laptop computers or any other electronic devices you may carry with you.

Camp Zebra is Serengeti camping at its finest. The mobile nature of the camp makes it easy to follow the wildebeest herds as they complete their long journey, ensuring the best wildlife sightings during the incredible Great Migration in Tanzania. See our HerdTracker app for the latest migration updates.