What are the biggest dangers to the annual wildebeest Migration?

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What is the biggest danger to the annual wildebeest migration?

What are the biggest dangers to the annual wildebeest Migration?

Wildebeest, also called gnus, are members of the antelope family. They are related to oryxes and gazelles. A wildebeest can grow to 2.4 meters (8 feet) in length, and weigh up to 270 kilograms (600 pounds).

The biggest obstacles to the Great Migration in East Africa

  • Lake and Rivers across Serengeti and Masai Mara

The rivers and indeed the few isolated lakes in the south of the Serengeti are terrifying to the wildebeest firstly because of the animal’s fear of the water itself and the creatures it may hide, and secondly, because water generally means vegetation and thickets that may conceal predators. Yet the wildebeest have an inherent instinct to trek in a certain direction at any cost – despite their terror. The lakes in the south – Ndutu, Masek, and Lagarja – for example, are little more than a few kilometers long, and could easily be walked around. But natural selection steps in once more: the wildebeest that crossed the lakes in previous generations survived to breed, so the waters pose no fear to their journey; those that did not make it gave any further input to the gene pool.

  • Predators in Serengeti and Masai Mara

Cast predators include lions, leopards, hyenas, and cheetahs. The Serengeti’s southern plains host the highest concentration of predators in Africa during the wildebeest calving season (January-March). 

  • The flooding Mara River

The peak of the migration is the epic and spectacular Mara River crossing stage in the northern Serengeti with the raging Mara River the largest obstacle to the migration’s progress (July-September/ October depending on the rains). With millions of Hooves tormenting the ground a thunder-like Noise is hard with the dusty cloud as the herds bunch up on the riverbank before taking the plunge and when the river is flooded a lot of the wildebeest is drawn in the river.

  • Nile crocodiles in the Mara River 

The Nile Crocodiles wait for the drama as the ambitious wildebeest struggle to reach fresh grazing plains in the Masai Mara. Little do they know; the infamous Mara lions form an intimidating viciously waiting across the plains.



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