Africa’s Great Migration is surely one of the most iconic wildlife shows on earth. The largest migration of mammals anywhere on earth sees approximately 1.5 million wildebeest, accompanied by hundreds of thousands of zebra & gazelle complete endless loops of the East African Savannah in search of fresh grass and better quality water. Gazing out over these great herds, and seeing the predation of the unfortunate few is a bucket list experience on many a persons list.
By September/October the great herds have reached the Northern Serengeti where many cross the border into Kenya and find themselves in the Masai Mara. Along with the abundant food that comes with the rains, the herds face arguably their greatest challenge… crossing the Mara River. Having survived predation by lions and cheetah along the way the herds have to navigate a path past hundreds of hungry crocodiles, who have waited almost a year since their last proper meal. The crocodiles lie in wait just below the surface until a group of desperate wildebeest or zebra attempt to cross the river. Once the group is crossing it is easy picking, as the crocs take their prey down to the river bottom where they will drown and subsequently eat the animal. The crocs have gotten so good at this hunting technique, and their prey is so plentiful, that it is not uncommon for a crocodile to kill a wildebeest and not actually eat it.
We travelled to the Masai Mara in October as part of a larger loop that took in Northern Tanzania, Ngorongoro and the Serengeti, before crossing the border into Kenya and finishing up at the Masai Mara & Lake Nakuru. This is a great itinerary for this time of year and will give you a great chance of seeing the greatest migration on earth. We were able to have fantastic viewing of the herds, saw a number of river crossing (including a crocodile kill) as well as getting great sightings of the big 5 and cheetah.