Safari in January wildebeest migration pattern – The herds are in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, moving back down south from the north-east region and into the area of the Southern Serengeti, Lake Ndutu and Ngorongoro Conservation Area (they do not enter the Ngorongoro Crater those are resident wildebeest). The Serengeti is not fenced, so the herds are free to move where they can find grazing areas with fresh grass. Remember that although up to two million wildebeest, zebra and antelope form the Migration, they are not all in a single herd. The animals break up into mega-herds of thousands or hundreds of individuals at time.
It is calving season until about March – expect wobbly babies… and lots of heartbreak as predators swoop in. If you want productive predator action, the Southern Serengeti supplies it with lions, brown hyenas, leopards and even wild dogs taking advantage of vulnerable calves.
Grassy plains studded with granite kopjes extend endlessly across the scenically beautiful Southern Serengeti, which stretches from the bottom of the Central Serengeti to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Maswa Game Reserve. It’s one of the best areas to see the animals of the Great Migration: visit between December and May to see the huge herds of wildebeest, zebra and gazelle arriving to calve, and then at the beginning of the dry season making their way northwards again in search of green grass. February is a particularly good month to visit the Southern Serengeti to see thousands of baby wildebeest taking their first steps on the savannah – and being targeted by hungry lion, cheetah and hyena, which are in abundance in the region.
Safari in January wildebeest migration pattern – A safari in the Southern Serengeti is all about seeing the Great Migration in action on daily game drives, whether it’s baby wildebeest being born and taking their first steps on the lush green plains in the early months of the year, or watching the vast herds on the move as they track their course northwards towards the Masai Mara. The Southern Serengeti is one of the places where you can see the full circle of the Great Migration: the herds returning to graze in December with the start of the green season, the birth of the babies in January and February, and the departure of the herds as the grass starts to dry at the end of the rains.
January sees the herds starting to settle into the short grass plains around Lake Ndutu, just south of the border with the national park itself. This immense region of short-grass plains is classic Serengeti, with vast open skies and endless savanna stretching as far as the eye can see. January is often the start of calving with the fertile soil and nutrient-rich grasses here providing the perfect start to new life… and in return draw in the predators! The best game viewing at this time of year stretches across much of the southern Serengeti and northern Ngorongoro Conservation Area – from Maswa to Gol, as far south as Kakesio, and as far north as the Moru Kopjes. Localised rainfall drives their movement. This is also the location of the highest concentrations of predators in Africa at any time of year!
Summary – Excellent cat viewing like chatterer, lions and leopards and large herds of the Great Migration spread across the entirety of the southern Serengeti and northern Ngorongoro Conservation Area. January is also a slightly quieter travel period than February or Christmas. A peak calving month.
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