The Great Migration

After the lion kill, the second most amazing thing we experienced on our trip to Africa was the Great Migration. The migration is composed of over 2 million animals, most wildebeest, that make a circular 1,800 mile pattern through the Serengeti (Tanzania) and Masai Mara (Kenya) in search of new grazing grounds. It is the largest animal herd in the world and quite a spectacular spectacle to witness. We waited three days to catch a glimpse of it. Finally, on our third and last day at Grumeti our guide told us the rain was coming and that the herd would be on its way. The animals follow the storms because that brings them rain ripe grass. We drove about an hour north of our lodge when we spotted them. It’s hard to explain what 2 million animals look like on the sprawling plains of the Serengeti. I imagine my eyes only witnessed about 100,000 of them. Pictures did it no justice. As you can see from above we look like we are just standing in a random field with some cows. I promise it was much cooler in person – I mean just look at my smile! Obviously it was something I had never seen. Literally animals for miles and miles. It was interesting to watch them interact. There were herds within herds, each with a dominate male keeping watch. There were thousands of babies. In addition to the wildebeest there are hundreds of thousands of zebra and gazelle mixed in. We hopped out of our vehicle and our guide quickly snapped a picture of us standing on the grass. Not safe, but necessary. The animals mainly scattered when I came flying out of the truck. It was amazing to be right in the middle of something I had only seen on the Discovery channel. If you ever plan a trip to Africa it is a great idea to try to follow the Migration at one of your lodges. As you can imagine with over 2 million animals – the predators come out in droves. Think stalking lions and wild river crossings with hungry crocodiles waiting. We didn’t get to witness a river crossing. It probably happened the very next day on the river our lodge was on but we were already headed off on another adventure. We were lucky to see it at all – our guide told us many people have been there several times and never caught a glimpse. Afterall, you can’t put a calendar on the rains or the animals. Here is a great National Geographic video that is far better than my pictures.

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One Response to The Great Migration

  1. Pingback: Travel: Africa – The Lodges | HIPLIP

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