Studies carried out by Serengeti Research Project suggest that protecting territory is the overarching reason - even more important than a group hunting or the communal rearing of cubs. That is why they will fight tooth and claw to protect them.
This is also why the Marsh Lions have been such a successful pride, occupying a perfect location that provides all they need: plentiful shade, permanent water, good ambush sites and safe nursery thickets in which their cubs can be safely hidden.
Marsh Lions Latest Update:
A mother's work is never done: ever since the recent loss of some of their cubs, the Marsh Pride lionesses have decided to keep their young closer than ever - even taking them along when they hunt! Rembo, Kito and Kabibi were seen scoping out some nearby zebras while their little ones lay low. Dada had teamed up with them and had already taken position around the other side of the prey, ready to form a very skilled attack ...
Want to see marsh lions up close?
A safari to the Masai Mara offers a good chance to see the famous marsh lions up close. Visit our website for information on Kenya safaris, as well as specific tours to suit your budget and interests. Discover Africa helps you decide on the best safari tour for your visit with over 89 customer reviews.
The Serengeti's centrally located Seronera River Valley marks the boundary between the grassy plains of the south and the wooded hills of the north. As a result, the area is home to wildlife from both habitats making the central Serengeti one of the richest ecosystems in the park and game viewing is good throughout the year.
At HerdTracker, we feel that one of the best ways to experience the Serengeti is via the simplistic extravagance of a colonial-style tented safari camp, which moves around the Serengeti according to the season. You'll enjoy all the trappings of a luxury safari lodge but in an exclusive, pristine wilderness setting - ideal to soak up all the thrills of the wildebeest migration!
A herd of the wildebeest was captured in the Central Serengeti!
The Central Serengeti is a fantastic area to see the Great Migration in action: the herds move through this section of the park from April to June as they travel northwards, and then they come back again heading south from October to December.
The wildebeest and zebra herds are in the Central Serengeti region! Chances of seeing predators are high, especially when the herds are dropping their young between February and March. Lions and cheetah are common, and leopards are often seen in the valley where the lack of trees makes it relatively easy to spot them. Some of the best locations in the Central Serengeti to see the herds include the Seronera Valley and Seronera River, Moru Kopjes, Simba Kopje and Maasai Kopjes.
At HerdTracker, we feel that one of the best ways to experience the Serengeti is via the simplistic extravagance of a colonial-style tented safari camp, which moves around the Serengeti according to the season. You'll enjoy all the trappings of a luxury safari lodge but in an exclusive, pristine wilderness setting - ideal to soak up all the thrills of the wildebeest migration.
If you're after Big Cats, the Seronera area in the Central Serengeti is your best bet: this region is hailed as the best place to see predators - particularly lion, leopard and cheetah - on thrilling hunts.
The Central Serengeti is studded with many rocky granite outcrops, known as kopjes, which are where you should look out for lions and cheetahs. There are also some particular kopjes highlights, such as the Simba Kopjes, or Simba Rocks - the place that inspired Pride Rock in the Disney film The Lion King.
A large herd of wildebeest and zebra were captured in the Central Serengeti heading towards the Makoma Hills and Magadi. The herds normally use this route to get to the western Serengeti. The migration will be in the western Serengeti early this year following the dramatic change of rainfall pattern in the Serengeti.
Budget travellers are best off staying in the Central Serengeti, as the Western Corridor and the Grumeti are more geared towards higher-end travellers, however, there is a campsite located at a lodge near the Ndabaka entrance gate, and a public campsite at the gate itself. Mid-range options in the sector include camps located just outside the park boundaries, while the region is most famous for its superb, intimate luxury lodges and mobile camps – some of which are completely exclusive.
Scores of wildebeest are still pouring through Ndutu, where calves are being born in great numbers. While the rains are continuing, the Ngorongoro Plains offer life-giving water before the wildbeest eventually move on.
The calving season is arguably one of the most interesting and enjoyable times of the year to view the Great Migration, due to the abundance of new life in the area, from baby elephants using their trunks for the first time, to stealthy lions on the look out for food for their bouncing cubs.
A green season safari is both affordable and one of the best times of the year for a photographic safari. Although rainy, there are wonderfully sunny days too.
Michael Thomas captured the latest migration image in the Kakesio Plains - Image by Michael Thomas
Charley Swynnerton spotted the great migration during a balloon flight in the Serengeti.
Experience the breathtaking beauty of the Serengeti National Park on a once-in-a-lifetime hot air balloon safari. A Serengeti balloon safari is an extraordinary opportunity to relish a bird's eye-view of the phenomenal sweeping plains below.Tiny little dots rove across the diverse landscape and as you get closer, you are spectator to the most magnificent view of dramatically striped black and white zebra, the wildebeest and subtle swishes of puffed golden tails reveal lions loolling uder shady trees.
Gently bob through the air and your eye darts to every possible corner, euphoric on adrenalin this stunning approach to absorbing the home of the wild things is truly an overwhelming experience, where very little can hide from you here!
If you haven't...you should! The Ndutu Safari Lodge is the best accommodation to witness the Wildebeest Migration.
It is something truly spectacular, mind blowing, surreal and definitely one for the bucket list. The sheer numbers are jew dropping and one can only drive away in absolute awe of nature and a sense of how incredible this would can be.
November to May is considered low season in Africa so you can get away with booking just a few months in advance. We recommend booking at least three to four months ahead of travel to give yourself plenty of time to consult with an Africa Safari Expert and ensure you get the best value!
A large herd of the wildebeest was captured in the Ndutu heading towards the Miti Mitatu. The herds move slowly and predictably, as the one-month-old calves are fed constantly. The glut of calves make easy prey for predators! Expect lots of lion and leopard encounters.
Safari guide spotted lion cubs playing on the Big Marsh in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. The Ndutu plains have been experiencing good rains for the past few weeks.
With thousands of wildebeest of baby wildebeest running around, it is much easier for a mother lion, cheetah or leopard to find a meal for the hungry cubs as well as give them the opportunity to learn how to hunt for themselves by practicing on young calves before they have to go out and fend for themselves! Young cubs learn valuable lessons during this time which is crucial to their success.
There is a very high probability of witnessing a kill on a game drive in this period. The calves are easy prey for Africa's big predators: lions, cheetahs, leopards, spotted hyenas, and rare wild dogs.
Safari guide Michael Thomas captured the great herds in the Ndutu area. However, a large herd is in the Kakesio area.
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.
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.
Like the wildebeest that are the stars of the Serengeti Annual Migration, the Olakira camp is a wanderer; a luxurious under-canvas camp that moves with the seasons, forever following the herds to ensure you have a front-row seat to the greatest show on earth.
Fine linens, finer dining and a touch of nomadic romance are the hallmarks of this authentic East African safari camp. Whether it’s at the river crossings of the northern Serengeti, the breath-taking scenery of the Lamai Wedge, or on the great grassy plains of the south, the intimate Olakira camp ensures the best of the Serengeti is always right on your doorstep.
December to March typically coincides with ‘calving season’ in the Serengeti and Ndutu Wilderness Camp is ideally located so visitors can view this spectacle. Nestled under shady trees, on the Ndutu plains, this camp allows guests to enjoy the wealth of wildlife that has made these sun-soaked plains so renowned.
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.