Nomad Tanzania Wildebeest Migration Report
Posted at 6:57am on 22/02/2013
During the dry spell of the last one or two weeks, the animals were quite dispersed and had moved towards the Serengeti and Kusini area, and the triangle towards Naabi Hill. However, big rains in the last two days has seen the usual dramatic turnaround. The herds will probably start to move back more onto the Ngorongoro Conservation Area side now and search for the fresh short grass. There are already a lot of little wildie babies in evidence which makes for great viewing. While I am writing this, the guests of Serengeti Safari Camp are sitting in the mess tent watching a big male lion having his wildebeest breakfast not more than 150m away.... It's still amazing that we have the opportunity to witness such things...
The rain has wreaked a small amount of havoc on the roads, and those wanting to cross small Olduvai had to wait for a few hours while the water subsided yesterday. The bridge over the main arm of the gorge meant there were no issues there. Today, after two days of heavy rain, some of the roads in the south are challenging, and in true safari style, the odd vehicle is getting stuck...all part of the fun!
Find out more about the Serengeti Migration.
Zambezi Safaris - Africa updates
Posted at 2:30am on 09/03/2012
Aspiring explorers will need to be quick to secure a place on a new escorted Zambia expedition with one of the country’s leading guides, Rod Tether.
The new guided safari is available on limited departure dates from April to July 2012.
Highlights include seeking out the elusive Sitatunga antelope and Pel's Fishing Owl along with elephant and hippo amongst the rich river floodplains of Kasanka, and tracking down the Shoebill Stork, probably the most sought-after bird in the world, by poling through the Bangweulu Swamps. A sojourn at the historic Impandala House – Stewart Gore-Browne’s eccentric English manor house – on the shores of Lake Shiwa Ng'andu, will include a day trip to Kapishya Hot Springs and boat trip on the lake. The trip ends with a stay at Jake and Gillie's Private House on the edge of the world-famous South Luangwa National Park, with game drives to encounter big game including leopard, lion and buffalo.
As featured in The Independent (UK).
Heritage Hotels Big Cat and Migration Updates
Posted at 10:49am on 05/12/2012
The weather is great after the recent short rains. It’s clear in the mornings and cool in the afternoons with rain on the peripheries of the Mara.
The grass is green and fresh after the annual world-famous wildebeest migration. The old grass was grazed upon by the migrating wildebeest and zebras from the neighbouring Serengeti in Tanzania.
The lactating herbivorous females are well-fed on the fresh grass and are able to produce a lot of milk for their young ones. In this season of plenty, the grasslands are dotted with wild flowers in bloom.
The Domestic Migration of Wildebeest and Zebras
The herds of wildebeest and zebras from the Loita Plains (east of the Mara Reserve) form the domestic migration. They have not returned to their calving grounds because there has been no rain in the area.
Therefore we are still enjoying big herds around the Olkiombo Plains. This means that predators like the big cats are in close range of the Mara Intrepids and Mara Explorer camps and our guests are treated to good sightings of the cheetah, leopards and lions.
There is an abundance of other plains game. The elephants have also come out of the bushes after the migrating wildebeest and zebra cropped down the tall grass. The elephants are now gorging themselves on the new shoots.
Lion sightings are good around Olkiombo Plains.
All the prides are coming together to strengthen their bonding. Notch and his sons are with the Olkiombo Pride. The lioness in the pride has two cubs aged three months. One of the cubs has a deformed foreleg but it manages to move around.
The Ridge Pride has also returned to its residential place after hanging around for a month by the Olkiombo airstrip and Notch and his boys refusing to join the pride. However a young male joined the pride from somewhere and was seen mating with the Ridge female on recently. We do not know this male and will keep tabs on him.
The Paradise Pride is doing well with three males who took over from the Notch group without a fight.
Olive mated with the Ridge male between Olare Orok and the Rhino Ridge three weeks ago. We are expecting the new cubs by the end of February 2013.
Bahati mated one and half months ago near the Fig Tree rock by the junction of Talek and Olare Orok, west of the Mara Intrepids Camp. The cubs are due by January 2013.
Olive and Bahati are still sharing the same territory but Bahati is spending a lot of time west of Mara Intrepids Camp. Olive is still with Saba who is ten months old, patrolling her territory around Smelly Crossing at Olare Orok.
Cheetah sightings are also good around the Olkiombo Plains.
Malaika is with her cub aged nearly eight months. They are eight kilometers south of Mara Intrepids Camp on the Central Plain where the grass was burned. It now attracts a large population of gazelles browsing on the new shoots.
Alama with her two cubs aged seven months is east of Mara Intrepids Camp between Olare Orok Conservancy and Maasai Mara National Reserve.
Heritage Hotels (Kenya) manages two luxury camps in the Masai Mara - Mara Explorer and Mara Intrepids - in the confluence of the four game viewing areas of the Masai Mara. The camps are on the banks of the Talek River, with most tents spread along the banks. Report and pictures by John Parmasau & Dixon "DC" Chelule, Mara Explorer & Mara Intrepids Camp ©Heritage Hotels Ltd, Kenya.http://www.heritage-eastafrica.com/