July has been a fantastic month with lots of wildebeest movement through the Singita Grumeti. The wildebeest have been playing their part in trampling the tall grasses, opening up the environment to other herbivores that follow in pursuit of the most nutritious grasses.
Despite being a rather dry month, the Grumeti River still trickles crystal clear over her white sands. Many animals drink from the river now as we see most of the waterholes drying. The lions wait upon the banks of the Grumeti, seeking prey as they descend to drink.
Here’s a Sightings Snapshot for July:
- Core prides of the central regions have been somewhat broken up since the beginning of the month. With good prey species scattered throughout the region, lionesses and youngsters have splintered in various directions making the most of the passing wildebeest.
- Butamtam Pride members have been camped in the Chui drainage area and Koroya Hill, with movements down to the Grumeti River and the German Bridge region not uncommon.
- The Nyasirori Pride have been spending a reasonable amount of time on the central Raho drainage, hunting wildebeest and zebras as they pass by the shrinking puddles of water.
- The Bangwezi Pride has been observed a number of times on the Ikorongo Spine Road, just north of the Rokari River.
- A handsome male has been sighted a number of times with young wildebeest kills on the Grumeti River, just upstream of the Nyamamba Bridge, north-east of Bangwezi Camp.
- The Grumeti North female has been observed in the region west of Faru Faru and was seen hunting a number of times on the Grumeti River banks.
- The impressive Sabora drainage male leopard has offered a number of great sightings. This powerfully built leopard is quite a sight to see and can be observed lying in the branches of the sausage trees close to Sabora.
- Towards the end of the month, we have observed some fantastic cheetah sightings, especially with conditions becoming particularly favourable for the slender speed kings and queens.
- Two male cheetahs have been observed from the central Koroya Hill area towards Faru Faru - the veteran continuing to hunt his territory in the area, and another new male hunting close to the Mbogo drainage, a stone’s throw from Faru Faru.
- A number of females have been observed with young, which is incredible news! The Sabora female has four cubs of 12 to 16 weeks old. Another female with two 20-week-old cubs has been seen in the Raho region, and a female with two 12-month-old cubs was observed on Pundamilia Ridge.
- Some really lovely elephant breeding herds have been observed close to Bangwezi Camp, Ikorongo.
- We have enjoyed wonderful elephant viewing along the Grumeti River. The heat of the day has been particularly productive for watching elephants arrive at the river where the clear waters still flow just a centimetre above the golden sands. Guests have enjoyed magical experiences sitting on the riverbanks in the shade of the fig trees as a family of elephants descend excitedly to the shallow waters.
- The Ikorongo region has offered some great elephant viewing too this month, with hot spots being between Mbega and Nyamamba Bridges.
- Spectacular buffalo herds on the Sasakwa plains, never moving too far from Sasakwa Dam. A herd of 600 individuals can be seen drinking regularly at the dam, which is always impressive.
- Large herds have been frequenting the Grumeti River from Colobus Crossing up to Pelican Pan.
- There have been some awesome buffalo sightings in the Ikorongo, with many bulls close to the river.
- All rhinos are accounted for despite extensive movements to the east. There have been some lovely sightings of the rhinos close to Sasakwa Hill.
- After conditions changing with the passing of the wildebeest, many thousands of zebras have continued to open up the grasslands. Eland follow the zebra and warthog charge out of the long grasses and on to the open areas as great herds of animals move through. Many Thompson’s gazelle have moved into the central regions, and the giraffe journeys have been simply stunning.