Serengeti National Park

“Endless plains” is the literal translation of the Maasai (Siringet). Endless plains of savannah and forest landscapes. An area of about 30.000km² in the north of Tanzania and south of Kenya, 80% is located in Tanzania. The region is famous for the migration of approximately 1.5 million herbivores and the followers, thousands of predators, are moving because of the drought, from the northern hills to the southern plains. After the rains round about mid April, they take a detour through the western part back to the northern hills. This phenomenon they call a circular migration. In the early 60’s the government tried to stop the migration of the wildebeest and zebras by placing a long fence with barbed wire. However, the ancient instinct of these animals is so strong that this fence, the drought, a gorge, or crocodile in the Mara River cannot stop them.

The Serengeti is probably one of the most famous parks and one of the largest protected areas that border Kenya's Maasai Mara. The Serengeti gives you a picture of the typical wild and untouched Africa. The grasslands cover more than a third of the park, therefore you can find many animals, throughout the whole year.

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The lions, hyenas, cheetah’s and leopards whom hunt on these grass-eaters are in the park all year round and you will see the eagles and vultures, waiting in turn, to eat the leftovers of these predators. 

You will also see, among others, Thomson gazelles, Grant's gazelles, elands, ostriches, giraffes, aardvarks, klipspringer, impala, wildebeest, and buffalo, various types of bucks and antelopes, hippos, Nile crocodiles, elephants and of course, monkeys in large numbers are found. There are also 350 bird species counted in the Serengeti.

From late December to mid March the calves are born. Approximate 10,000 young animals per day. Unfortunately, only 60% survive the first months of their life.

The ecosystem of the Serengeti is one of the oldest on earth.
The essential features of climate, vegetation, and fauna have barely changed over the past million years.

Olduvai Gorge is a deep gorge about 45 km in length in the Great Rift Valley, between Ngorongoro and the Serengeti. Olduvai Gorge is one of the most important prehistoric sites in the world. In 1959 the anthropologists Mary and Louis Leakey found the remains of a 1.8 million years old first human been. Later in 1979 she made a discovery at Laetoli even more impressive: she found 3.5 million years old hominine footprints. Therefore, Olduvai Gorge is also known as "the cradle of mankind. You can visit a small museum dedicated to the appreciation and understanding of the Olduvai Gorge and Laetoli fossil sites.

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Migration Indicator diagram:

December and January:
As the herds are grazing in the short grass plains in the south of the Serengeti, the zebra foals are born. Southeastern part of the Serengeti, the Great Plains.
Transition Area of the Serengeti National Park and the Ngorongoro Crater.

February and March:
Approx 500,000 wildebeest calves are born. March and April are the wet months and that keeps the herd in the south.

Transition Area of the Serengeti National Park and the Ngorongoro Crater.

April:
Slowly to the central part of the Serengeti.

May:
From the beginning of May the herds start to move, they trek in western direction and northerly to the western corridor and follow the Mbalageti River to the Grumeti River.

June:
Crossing of the Grumeti River, Western Corridor.

July:
Northerly to the Grumeti controlled area and a small “herd” portion bends of to the Lobo area.

August:
The Ikorongo controlled area. During August the animals cross the Kenyan border to the Maasai Mara, where sins the spring rains attractive grass is advanced.

September:
Crossing of the Mara River. When the plains of the Serengeti are at their driest, the wildebeests stay in the Maasai Mara.

October:
From the Maasai Mara to the Serengeti, Loliondo Game controlled area.

November:
Loliondo Game controlled area (Serengeti National Park).

They never could figure out exactly why and when this phenomenon occurs. The scientists believe that it is determined by the rain in the different areas. It is thought that the wildebeest can smell water over a distance of 50 km. The rainfall in different areas determines the migration / trek and this is only an indication of where the herds can be located. The guides have a lot of contact with each other so we always know where the herds are.

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