February 2016 - Wildebeest migration updates

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A newborn wildebeest calf takes it’s first steps

29 Feb 2016 from Ndutu Safari Lodge

Today, surrounded by so many thousands of wildebeest, we were able to focus on just one as she gave birth. From birth to trying to stand: 2.23min; standing at 4.20mins and hunting for a drink 9 minutes later.

Having been unceremoniously dumped into a howling wind, the poor little thing shivered and wobbled uncertainly before finally locating the milk bar. By the time we left, 15 minutes later it was following Mum. Wonderful to watch.

- Video by Ndutu Safari Lodge
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Magic moments - The birth of a wildebeest calf

25 Feb 2016 from Ndutu Safari Lodge

Out on the plains, the wildebeest calving is in full swing. When the moment arrives it happens quickly, the mother looking mildly surprised at the wet bundle which has suddenly appeared.

Within minutes the baby is standing on wobbly pins, searching for the first feed of nourishing colostrum to gain strength to be able to keep up with it's mother. These magic moments were captured by Hamisi Masawe.

(Warning: images not for sensitive viewers)

The birth of a wildebeest calf
The birth of a wildebeest calf - Image by Hamisi Masawe
A wildebeest calf being born in Ndutu
A wildebeest calf being born in Ndutu - Image by Hamisi Masawe
The newborn calf  touches ground for the first time
The newborn calf touches ground for the first time - Image by Hamisi Masawe
The newborn wildebeest  takes in it's surroundings
The newborn wildebeest takes in it's surroundings - Image by Hamisi Masawe
The newborn calf and it's mother make eye contact
The newborn calf and it's mother make eye contact - Image by Hamisi Masawe
Mom gets close to her newborn calf
Mom gets close to her newborn calf - Image by Hamisi Masawe
The newborn calf gets ready to feed
The newborn calf gets ready to feed - Image by Hamisi Masawe
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Huge herds of wildebeest around Kimuma Hill and Ubuntu

25 Feb 2016 from Alex Walker's Serian

Hi HerdTracker,

I just spoke to one of our guides who has just come in from a game drive and he says there are huge herds of wildebeest still around Kimuma Hill and across to Ubuntu and north of there on the plains towards Ndutu.

It’s still sunny and dry here and plenty of green grass so hopefully they will be around here for a bit longer!

Kind Regards,
Belinda

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The migration is around Kakesio and the Makao plains

25 Feb 2016 from Lemala Camps

Hi HerdTracker,

The migration is around Kakesio and the Makao plains right now. Lots of of newborns witnessed. I'll send through images as soon as I meet one of our guides.

Regards,
Veronica
 

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New Loita arrivals in Naboisho

22 Feb 2016 from Asilia Africa

Asilia Africa guide Tim sent us these images of a newborn calf playing with it's mother in the Naboisho Conservancy, Kenya.

A newborn calf in the Naboisho Conservancy
A newborn calf in the Naboisho Conservancy - Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
A new addition to the Loita herds
A new addition to the Loita herds - Image by Timothy Leperes Laur

Latest images of the calving season in Ndutu

21 Feb 2016

Serengeti safari guide Miraji Gwau sent us these images of the wildebeest migration's calving season in Ndutu, getting close to the newborn calves.

- Image by Miraji Gwau
- Image by Miraji Gwau
- Image by Miraji Gwau
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Loita herds are gathering up in Naboisho looking very pregnant

19 Feb 2016 from Asilia Africa

Hi HerdTracker,

The Loita herds are gathering up in Naboisho looking very pregnant. Here are some images of the Loita migration in Kenya. 

Regards,
Tim

- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
- Image by Timothy Leperes Laur
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Huge herds of wildebeest between Kimuma and Ubuntu

18 Feb 2016 from Alex Walker's Serian

Hi HerdTracker

There are huge herds of wildebeest between Kimuma and Ubuntu and north on the plains towards Ndutu at the moment. Lots of calves but still many to calve yet. The guides said there are a lot of wildebeest around Kusini too.  

Gerard will try and get some images to you in the next couple of days. Thanks. 

Kind Regards,
Belinda

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The majority of the herds are in Makao and Kusini

18 Feb 2016 from Ndutu Safari Lodge

Good Morning HerdTracker,

Beautiful sunny days here giving some time for us and the landscape to dry out a bit after a lot of heavy rain.

In the immediate vicinity of the lodge, there are not so many of the wildebeest or zebra, however reports are that Hidden Valley has a lot of water and large numbers of animals coming to drink all day long.

The majority of the masses seem to be out south of here - Makao - Kusini direction, as well as the plains around the main road between Olduvai and Twin HIlls. Once guests actually reach the herds, there are babies popping out left right and centre.

Cheers,
AInslie

The majority of the herds are in Makao and Kusini
The majority of the herds are in Makao and Kusini - Image by Ainslie Wilson
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The migration is still close to the plains between Olduvai and Gol

15 Feb 2016 from Lemala Camps

Hi HerdTracker,

The migration is still close to the plains between Olduvai and Gol.

Then yesterday we had a group of wildebeests passing behind the camp heading to the Naabi plains as per the attached photo. Babies are not in great numbers yet.

Regards,
Greg

Wildebeest heading to the Naabi plains
Wildebeest heading to the Naabi plains - Image by Lemala Camps
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Ndutu is full of pregnant wildebeest ready to give birth

12 Feb 2016 from Lemala Camps

Hi HerdTracker,

Our guests at Lemala Ndutu sent us these images saying Ndutu is full of very pregnant mamas waiting to drop their newborn calves.

Photo credit Louise Hill - Arusha, Tanzania.

Kind Regards,
Lemala Camps
 

Thomson's gazelle and wildebeest in Ndutu
Thomson's gazelle and wildebeest in Ndutu - Image by Louise Hill
The calving season is in full swing in Ndutu
The calving season is in full swing in Ndutu - Image by Louise Hill
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The calving season is in full swing

08 Feb 2016 from Nomad Tanzania

There is daily rainfall over the short grass plains, which has now triggered the mother’s instincts to give birth giving the calves the benefit of the mineral-rich fresh grass. 

The herds are amazing in their density between Naabi and Ndutu, covering the plains and stretching beyond towards South and Olduvai. 

Thanks to Nomad Guide Ian Kiwelu for the photos.

Wildebeest migration in the southern Serengeti
Wildebeest migration in the southern Serengeti - Image by Ian Kiwelu
A newborn calf grazes of the mineral-rich grass on the southern Serengeti plains
A newborn calf grazes of the mineral-rich grass on the southern Serengeti plains - Image by Ian Kiwelu
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Wildebeest grazing on the southern Serengeti Plains

06 Feb 2016 from Lemala Camps

Miraji Gwau, a guide at Lemala Camps, took this image of the wildbeest migration grazing on the southern Serengeti Plains. 

The wildbeest migration grazing on the southern Serengeti Plains
The wildbeest migration grazing on the southern Serengeti Plains - Image by Miraji Gwau
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Serengeti South Flight Report

05 Feb 2016 from Serengeti Balloon Safaris

Hi HerdTracker,

We had an amazing flight this morning with 15 passengers onboard.

The weather was excellent this morning and we flew for 1.1 hours and landed with 8 knots after the triangle.

We flew right over the migration throughout the flight. We started halfway through the herd and we could not see their end.

There are wildebeests here in millions, not in thousands!

We also saw a pack of hyenas with a kill while some were chasing baby wildebeest. In addition there were a lot of Grant's gazelles, zebra, Thomson's gazelles, jackal, eland and African hares.

Our guests were in awe of this spectacle of nature from an exciting perspective.

Regards,
Captain Jones

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Two newborn wildebeest spotted in Naabi

02 Feb 2016 from Lemala Camps

Hi HerdTracker,

A small group of wildebeest have been seen at Shamba la Maharage which is Naabi Plains and more concentration is from this area up to Gol area. The guests saw two newborn wildebeests seems a sign they have started calving.

Yesterday, we just had rains in the evening and guides are expecting them to be moving closer to us .

Please see the picture taken yesterday about the calves. Should I hear more info today will get back to you.

Regards,
Greg

newborn wildebeest spotted in Naabi
Newborn wildebeest spotted in Naabi - Image by Lemala Camps
The calving season has started
The calving season has started - Image by Lemala Camps
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The calving season has started!

02 Feb 2016 from Ndutu Safari Lodge

Hi HerdTracker

There are masses of wildebeest north of here and south of here - north of the main road across the Serengeti up towards Lemuta, Angata Kiti and Piyaya. South of here also, between Twin Hills and Makao masses.

Reports are now coming in that the calving has started. You are not having to drive very far from here to be in the middle of it all. Guest are seeing some awesome cheetah chases and kills. Several sets of new Cheetah cubs have been sighted.

Cheers
Ainslie

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Big herd in the Ndutu area, going further east to Piyaya

Hi HerdTracker,

There's a big herd in the Ndutu area, going further east to Piyaya. The migratory animals are starting to give birth as well. 

Regards,
Simon
 

Lodges closest to the herd right now

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0 km

from herd

Legendary Serengeti Camp

$ 665

per person per night

Explore a rich landscape of inky blue skies, burnt orange sunsets and the soft neutrals of the African savannah. Bordering the game rich Lamai Triangle, twelve mobile luxury tents are hidden under the deep shade of acacia canopies.  

This camp moves north, west and south throught the year offering guests a front row seat to the migration, the procession of more than two million wildebeest, zebra and Thomson’s gazelle as they wander across the vast grass plains.

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1 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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1 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. 

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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.

Game Drive at Lemala Ndutu Tented Camp in Serengeti National Park

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.