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HerdTracker Heroes: Celebrating Our Top Contributors

Author: Micky Baker - 13 May 2024

Last Update: 17 May 2024

In the 10 years since we launched HerdTracker, we haven’t been alone. Hundreds of passionate contributors have helped us compile over 1,700 HerdTracker posts, transforming our big idea into a truly collaborative platform.

Pilots scour the savanna from above, guides and rangers track herds on the ground, and our partner lodges keep us in the loop. In fact, you can see all their contributions on the HerdTracker homepage.

Today, HerdTracker accurately pursues the Great Migration along its annual route, giving travellers the best opportunity to witness the Serengeti and Masai Mara’s greatest spectacle.

We know that without our contributors, HerdTracker simply wouldn’t work. That’s why we want to thank our top collaborators by name and honour their work in preserving and celebrating the Great Migration. Read on to learn more about them.

Lemala Camps and Lodges

An aerial view of the Lemala Nanyukie camp in Tanzania.
A view over the Lemala Nanyukie camp

Lemala exists for one reason: “Authentic African Safaris”. That’s the company’s credo, and its portfolio of camps and lodges bring this mission to life. You can find these tented camps, guesthouses, and villas in several key locations in Tanzania, including Arusha and the Serengeti.

Lemala has been a HerdTracker supporter from the very start. In fact, it added its first post to our platform on May 8, 2014, nearly 10 years ago. Since then, it has shared a whopping 163 posts to HerdTracker, making it our single biggest contributor.

This isn’t just a sign of collaboration – it tells travellers that Lemala’s camps are right at the heart of the Great Migration action. You can choose between these options:

All of these accommodations give travellers direct access to the Great Migration, making Lemala Camps and Lodges the perfect HerdTracker partner.

Ndutu Safari Lodge

Local Maasai people gather under a tree with a zebra in the foreground.
A cultural experience at Ndutu Safari Lodge

Where the Ngorongoro Conservation Area meets the Serengeti – right in the midst of the Great Migration route – you’ll find Ndutu Safari Lodge. For over 50 years, this lodge has welcomed travellers with trademark hospitality and a focus on showcasing the Great Migration.

Today, Ndutu Safari Lodge calls itself the consistent choice for expert guides, professional wildlife photographers, filmmakers, and biologists. This passion for conservation translates to a healthy partnership with HerdTracker. Since 2014, Ndutu has shared 92 posts to our platform, cementing its place as a guardian of the great wildebeest herds.

In fact, Ndutu carries out several of its own conservation programmes and encourages guests to get involved, too. It’s affiliated with the Korongoro People’s Lion Initiative, which employs Maasai warriors to protect their local lion prides. It also supports the Serengeti Cheetah Project and employs over 70 people from local communities.

Alex Walker’s Serian

Two Maasai warriors demonstrate their archery skills.
You can enjoy several cultural experiences at Alex Walker’s Serian

Alex Walker’s Serian is a collection of intimate, exclusive safari camps in both Kenya and Tanzania, giving it prime access to the Great Migration. It’s no surprise, then, that this incredible Discover Africa partner is a prolific HerdTracker contributor, too.

The company aims to share this access with travellers, offering everything from immersive game drive experiences to wildlife photography expeditions, guided walks, and hot air balloon safaris. To date, Alex Walker’s Serian has shared 89 posts to the HerdTracker platform, making it our third-largest contributor. 

“Our objective is to show you there’s more to safari than driving around ticking big animals off a list,” the company says. “It’s about being open to falling under the spell of this enchanting landscape.”

The Alex Walker’s Serian collection includes:

Elewana Collection

A woman and safari guide watch animals cross a river in the Serengeti.
You can experience safe guided walks at Elewana Collection camps

Comprising 16 boutique lodges and camps across Kenya and Tanzania, Elewana Collection combines East Africa’s genuine hospitality with an admirable commitment to responsible tourism. In fact, Elewana comes from the Swahili word for “harmony” and “understanding”, telling you all you need to know about its mission.

Through its Land & Life Foundation, Elewana works towards a sustainable future for local communities and wildlife alike. Meanwhile, its Shanga project gives local community members with disabilities the opportunity to earn livelihoods through art.

At its core, however, Elewana Collection aims to create “authentic and memorable” safari experiences for its guests. At several of its properties, travellers can get closer to the Great Migration than they ever imagined. We know this for a fact – since 2014, Elewana Collection’s Serengeti Pioneer Camp, Sand River Masai Mara, and Serengeti Migration Camp have shared 85 posts to HerdTracker, making it one of our top contributors.

Governors’ Camp Collection

A giraffe in full view from a Governers' Camp Collection tent.
The view from a canvas tent at one of the Governers’ Collection camps

In 1972, Governors’ Camp Collection established Africa’s first permanent luxury tented camp right on the banks of the Mara River. In the years since, many camps have attempted to follow suit, but most fall short of the benchmark set by founders Aris and Romi Grammaticas.

Governors’ Camp Collection now comprises six lodges in Kenya and one in Rwanda. To this day, the focus remains on creating immersive wilderness experiences with nothing but canvas separating guests from the bush. However, there’s no compromise on comfort or luxury.

It’s no wonder, then, that Governors’ Camp Collection has shared 80 posts to HerdTracker since 2014. Its front-row seat to the Great Migration makes it one of our key partners in the region and guarantees our clients incredible sightings between July and October each year. In addition to the original Governors’ Camp, guests can also visit the following accommodations:

Community and conservation are at the core of everything Governors’ Camp Collection does. For over 50 years, it has worked closely with community neighbours and local conservation groups to protect the wilderness, guaranteeing a sustainable future for all involved – including the charismatic wildlife.

Honourable Mention: Captain Joel J. Fernandes

The Great Migration in the Serengeti from above.
An aerial view of a wildebeest herd during the Great Migration

Up until this point, our top HerdTracker contributors have all been accommodation partners. However, our platform simply wouldn’t work without the input of individuals like Captain Joel J. Fernandes.

A commercial pilot with years of bush flying experience, Captain Fernandes regularly tracks the Great Migration from above and has shared many of his sightings directly to HerdTracker. In fact, he has single-handedly contributed 62 posts to our platform.

Although he no longer works with Coastal Aviation, he has inspired dozens of other individuals to use HerdTracker – and we are eternally grateful for his trust in our vision. If you’re reading this and want to follow in his footsteps, here’s how you can contribute to HerdTracker:

  • Take a picture / video of your wildebeest migration sighting mentioning the location and date
  • Use #HerdTracker in your post and tag @HerdTracker (Twitter / Instagram)
  • Make sure to enable your location so we can map your contribution
  • You can also send your image and description via email to herdtracker@discoverafrica.com
  • Please include the following in your email:
    • The company / camp / lodge name and / or logo
    • High resolution images of your accommodation, if possible
    • Your company / camp / lodge GPS coordinates
A woman takes an image for the HerdTracker platform.
You can use your phone to add posts to HerdTracker

After 10 years, HerdTracker is just getting started. We’ve gone from a bright idea to a functional tool used by lodges, camps, rangers, and guides, and we’ve created a safari community with a common goal: to celebrate and protect the annual Great Migration.

Learn more about our HerdTracker Migration Safaris or speak to one of our expert Discover Africa consultants today.

Image credits: iStock, Supplied

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Copyright © Discover Africa Safaris | HerdTracker Heroes: Celebrating Our Top Contributors | Last Updated: 17 May 2024