May has been yet another fascinating month here on the Singita Grumeti Reserve.
There has been reasonable rainfall, including intermittent showers towards the end of the month. The Grumeti River still flows, although it dropped considerably towards the end of the month. The grass remains long, but despite this the predator sightings have been awesome. The colours of the landscape are changing as the dry wind begins to set in.
Many thousands of wildebeest are nearing the Singita Grumeti Reserve now and it is only a matter of time before they reach us. As they edge closer our anticipation grows to witness the migration which is recognised as one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World.
A sightings snapshot for May follows:
- Butamtam Pride observed almost daily this month. Much of their activity has been between Koroya Hill and the German Bridge on the Grumeti River.
- Great Nyasirori Pride sightings south of OP 7 and on the Butamtam drainage. The seven young males of the pride are becoming quite the attraction and should one day become a very strong coalition. These males are approaching two years old now, and they are almost fully grown in the body.
- There have been some fantastic lion sightings recorded close to Fara Faru Lodge and along the Grumeti North drainage.
- The Nyasirori high ground has also offered some great lion interactions this month.
- There have been some lovely leopard interactions from the males in various areas of the Sasakwa plains and close to Sabora.
- Some good sightings of our resident leopard on Sasakwa hill. Although still quite shy, our gentle processes of habituation are paying off.
- At Faru Faru a mother and two youngsters were sighted from the rooms, walking the river bank.
- Cheetah sightings have been good in certain areas of the reserve.
- A young male cheetah has been sighted on a number of occasions on the Nyasirori high ground, south of Sabora.
- The Sasakwa male has been seen hunting within his territory on the Sasakwa plains, close to Koroya hill and the watershed areas.
- A female with cubs was observed in the central region.
- With the difficult conditions and the movement of lions, the cheetahs have to be weary, often exploring the gaps between the prides in favourable hunting areas.
- The elephant sightings this month have been phenomenal. We have experienced some fantastic elephant herds moving through the Grumeti Reserve. Very large aggregations of many different breeding herds have, at times, gathered in great numbers, rolling gently across the plains.
- There have been some lovely sightings of elephants utilising the Sabora drainage line for the whole month. The low ground adjacent to the drainage line has remained wet with lovely drinking holes and many herbs, grasses and juicy climbers which the elephants have been making the most of.
The great resident herds of buffalo remain etched into the grasslands of the reserve. They fend off the lion prides day and night as the seven young Nyasirori males make a habit of bringing down buffalo regularly. The buffalo herds in general are looking in excellent condition with many calves within the herds.
All rhinos are healthy and accounted for, despite some extensive movements.