Great Migration monthly overview:
The trek takes place in the southeastern Serengeti on the short grass plains after the short rains that have provided fresh grass. January and December are the main months for the birth of zebras.
The grass plains are the main food source for around two million wildebeest, zebra and gazelles. Predators lurk nearby, feeding on the helpless newborn. This is the main month for wildebeest calving.
Beginning of the long and heavy rainfalls. Clouds, which increase in intensity, appear from the south and occasional lightning flashes illuminate the night sky. The pastures of the short grass plains are almost exhausted and the newborns have to keep up with the herds.
In this month it rains the most. The wildebeests are scattered almost everywhere on the short grass plains.
Good food is still available, but water is becoming scarce. Now the huge herds are beginning to unite with hundreds of thousands of animals stretching over many kilometres.
The rain is ending and the herds leave the plains and cross the Grumeti River, where every year many wildebeests provide a feast for the crocodiles.
The animals of the great migration now head northwest and leave the park for a short time, with a small part of the herd heading towards the Lobo area. The morning temperatures are now falling sharply.
The animal migration and the constantly present predators now cross the Ikorongo area. The different branches of migration are beginning to meet. The migration in a normal year should now take place in the northern Serengeti and the Maasai Mara. It is still cold in the morning.
The trek has now reached Kenya’s Maasai Mara Game Reserve, located beyond the northern border of the Serengeti. Temperatures are rising and the sky is without clouds most of the time.
This is the driest month in the Serengeti. Most of the animals stay for a short time in the Masai Mara Game Reserve, where there is always plenty of water and better grazing for the lowland animals at this time of year.
With the upcoming short rain the animals go back to the Serengeti to start a new cycle. Many trees begin to bloom and migratory birds arrive.
The migration trek accelerates towards the southern plains of the Serengeti, where the short rains allow fresh grass growth. The zebras begin to give birth.