The Great Migration is the largest mass movement of land mammals on Earth, when more than a million wildebeest, along with thousands of zebra, topi, and gazelle, stalked by predators like big cats, vultures and hyenas circle through the Serengeti plains in Tanzania and Masai Mara Reserve in Kenya. Following instinct and the scent of moisture, looking for fresher greener land, the herds move clockwise from their calving grounds in the lush plains of the southern Serengeti, moving to the northern Serengeti and eventually crossing the Mara river to Masai Mara.
The Mara River crossing is the hardest part of their journey, a life-or-death situation since there are vicious Nile crocodiles and territorial hippos in the river waiting to attack. Hippos are herbivores but we saw one feeding on the zebra that fell prey to the crocodiles. We watched in horror, as a severely wounded yet brave zebra walked slowly across the other side followed by hyenas. We saw hundreds, maybe thousands of wildebeests waiting on the riverbank in masses before the first ones made the daring leap. Masai Mara Great Migration is definitely one of the greatest wildlife shows on Earth.
As the plains in Serengeti dry out, the animals spend the summer and early fall in Masai Mara before heading south again in the fall to repeat the cycle. The scale of this event and the encounters between predators and prey offer an extraordinary and amazing wildlife spectacle.
There were many baby elephants and lion cubs around as well showing us the cycle of Life and Death on the plains. We had the opportunity to see the animals in the wild and the migration firsthand. Here are a few photos from our trip to East Africa and the awe-inspiring Masai Mara Great Migration.
Photos from the Masai Mara Great Migration
While we have seen some of these animals in zoos, local safari parks, and even in a safari at the Animal Kingdom in Disney, nothing prepares you for seeing them in the wild. Did you know the word Safari in Swahili means Journey?
In the past, a Safari often meant hunting for the big game or Big 5, but thankfully these days, safaris are just to observe and photograph wildlife. There were a few occasions during our safari when we were a mere couple of yards away from the animals, they were least interested in us and fully focused on their prey or their surroundings. It truly was a humbling experience and makes you realize that this beautiful blue planet is not just ours, we share it with these amazing creatures, let’s respect them and give them space.
See this post for a breakdown of the Great Wildebeest Migration by season.
I hope these photos from our Safari trip and Safari quotes inspire you to plan your trip to Africa!
Photos captured by Vinod (aka Mr.Suburbia), and subject to copyright. Please don’t use them without permission. Thanks to our amazing safari guide Wilson at Angama Mara who made every attempt to get our family front-row seats to witness the Great Migration and capture photos and make memories.
See this post for some more African Quotes and Proverbs
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