What Is The Wildebeest Migration Calving Season? Simply put, it’s a large migration of wildebeest that typically occurs in January and February of each year. This significant movement is significant because the wildebeest will try to give birth to calves in better conditions by avoiding any predators that could complicate the process and cause a lot of problems. The heads of the family are put in a very dangerous situation because they will do everything in their power to protect their calves, but sadly, predators are fairly intelligent, and they always head to the south of the Serengeti (where everything will happen) to take advantage of the vulnerable newborns!
When is the best time to see the wildebeest calving season?
Anyone’s bucket list should include taking in this incredible event, which is usually planned six to twelve months in advance. You should be aware of the best times of the year to begin planning for your safari because wildebeest give birth at specific times of the year. If you want to witness the entire calving season for the wildebeest migration, you must travel to Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park between January and March. The calving season frequently lasts into March, and thousands of zebras and gazelles that have traveled with the wildebeest also give birth during this time.
Where can you see the wildebeest calving season?
Wildebeest herds and other animals start migrating to the Southern Serengeti in January after the rains start falling. The Serengeti’s southern plains will start to turn green, offering new grazing and the necessary energy for the calving season. Over half a million wildebeests are born in a two- to three-week period during this time. Up to 8,000 wildebeest calves are born every day by February. Consider this when planning your African safari experience because it is a unique opportunity that nature presents to us every year.
What Can You Expect From the Wildebeest Calving Seasons?
Over 500,000 newborn calves will enter this world in an open plain during this event’s massive and well-coordinated birthing by wildebeest over the course of three weeks, which will be one of many unforgettable scenes. The most amazing thing about calves is their ability to stand up in a matter of minutes and then run and attempt to flee from any predators that may be present in these hazardous areas within a matter of days.
Yes, that is fascinating and amazing, but this is not the only event that will occur during this calving season. Predators like lions, cheetahs, leopards, and hyenas will be lurking in the Southern Serengeti looking for prey because there will be a lot of weak calves. The likelihood of witnessing a predator-prey encounter and killing during this time is very high. Anything could happen to the newborn calves at this point.
The wildebeest and other animals will start to leave at the end of the calving season, in March, in search of better weather, new grazing, and a better environment free of those predators that are keeping an eye on them. Additionally, they will need to keep moving because staying put will become more challenging as the southern Serengeti plains begin to dry out.
One of the most amazing experiences in nature can be had by visiting the Serengeti during the calving season, which is jam-packed with action, drama, and natural wonders. One of the best times to watch the best games is during this unbelievable once-a-year event. Don’t miss the chance to see this wonderful event if you have the chance! Without a doubt, it will be worthwhile!
When should I book for the Calving Season?
A little forethought is required to fully enjoy the Serengeti wildebeest migration calving season. Since the weather is mostly dry and the game viewing is so good, it is high season, and lodging quickly sells out. The pertinent months are January, February, and March; if you have specific dates in mind, we recommend making reservations up to a year in advance, especially for February when the dramatic calving season is in full swing. We suggest making reservations six to eight months in advance if you are not specific about dates during the January to March calving season. The earlier you book, the better for February!
Where should I stay, and for how long?
The Ndutu region, located south of the Serengeti, has the best camps for the calving season. You can leave camp on early morning drives and go right into the action because many are semi-permanent tented camps that are erected each year along the route of the migration. The typical form of your lodging is a sizable, walk-in tented suite with a large bed, an outdoor seating area, and a private bathroom.
To enhance the migration experience, we advise spending three nights in the Ndutu region and two nights somewhere else. Perhaps a camp in the Central Serengeti, which has excellent resident wildlife, or a lodge at the nearby Ngorongoro Crater, which offers Africa’s most reliable Big 5 game viewing since Ndutu is a part of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.
What activities will I do?
During the calving season, wildlife viewing is typically enjoyed from the comfort of an open-sided 4X4 in the capable hands of a trained professional guide. A spot light will be used to guide you on both of your daily drives, which you will take in the early morning and the late afternoon.
The Serengeti National Park is not where we advise staying during the calving season, so your guide will have the advantage of being able to drive off-road for exceptional sightings, and you will have the opportunity to go on walking safaris with Tanzanian Park Rangers.
Another well-liked activity is visiting a village. Together with your guide, you can go to a nearby community to learn about Maasai customs and culture, and you might even get to see Maasai warriors perform their renowned “jumping dance.”
Although hot-air ballooning is not an option in the Ndutu region, it is unquestionably a possibility in the central Serengeti. The best choice is to combine a stay in the central Serengeti with a transfer from Ndutu that takes an hour and a half in the early morning.
Is it only the wildebeest calving season, or do other animals also have their young at this time?
This is the time to go if you want to see lots of baby animals of all kinds. On the southern plains, there are also a lot of zebra foals and gazelle fawns running around, trying to avoid predators by hiding behind the hundreds of thousands of wildebeest calves.
Many local animals enter their primary breeding season as a result of the sudden growth of vegetation; as a result, the open woodlands are suddenly home to warthog piglets, baby baboons, wobbly-legged giraffes, and baby elephants with trunks they can’t quite control.
Large carnivores in Africa make sure their breeding season coincides with the beginning of the migration because of the abrupt abundance of herbivores. At this time of year, lions, cheetahs, and leopards typically have their cubs, making these sightings among the most sought-after for photographers.
Where else should I go during the calving season?
Tanzania’s Tarangire National Park is a good option if you want to stay close to home but would also like a complete contrast to the Serengeti and Ndutu. There will be some rain, and it won’t be peak tourist season in January, February, or March, but the scenery will be stunningly green, there won’t be many other tourists, and the wildlife will be very different from what you’d see during a migration.
Zanzibar, which is located in Tanzania, is the best and most accessible beach destination. The months of January through March are ideal for visiting Spice Island because the weather is warm and sunny and the Indian Ocean is at its clearest during this time, which is great for snorkelers and divers.
Gorilla trekking in the equatorial forests of Uganda and Rwanda puts you in close proximity to a family of one of the largest and most endangered primates in the world, for a wildlife experience with drama on par with the calving season. The best months for gorilla trekking are January, February, and March. One of the two dry seasons in the area occurs during these months, and the rainforest is at its most comfortable.