With the wildebeest migration in full swing up in the Masai Mara, guests at Governors’ Il Moran Camp have been treated to some wonderful sightings.
Just the other day, there were two small crossings below the main crossing points, coming from the west to the east with an estimated 3,000 wildebeest crossing into the southern areas of Paradise Plains. These wildebeest and zebra moved into the open grasslands below Emartii, east of Rhino Ridge. The usually dense and long grasslands of this alluvial, low lying area have now been eaten down to the level of a manicured golf course.
The herds then moved into the double-crossing area of the Olare Orok side. The majority of these animals are in large herds scattered across Topi Plains, Malima Tatu and the east Musiara Plains. The Musiara area, and much of the southern reserve has received 44mm of rain in last week. This rainfall pattern has influenced the movements and crossings of these wildebeest and zebra of late.
The Musiara spotted hyena clan has been very active lately, hunting and killing wildebeest in the west marsh grasslands. The hyenas are direct competitors to the resident lion prides, and a pack of 22 hyenas was recently seen eating a wildebeest!
The Madomo lion pride was below Emartii Hill and some were in the croton thicket leading up to Emartii. Madomo’s sister who has the single cub that is now six months old was seen resting on a termite mound and the four 13-month-old cubs of Madomo were also resting up on another termite mound. Madomo’s other older sister has two cubs that are estimated at 2 months old and they are in a culvert close to the double crossing on the Olare Orok side of the crossing.
The two male cheetah brothers were seen on paradise plains late in the afternoon and have killed a Thompson gazelle. The single female cheetah has also seen resting below Emartii Hill.
Small herds of Elephant still pass through the BBC campsite and spend the day in the marsh. Scattered herds can be seen feeding on the open plains, and it appears that much of what they are taking off the grasslands are young acacias and Balanites. Giraffe can be seen scattered out across many different habitats with the riverine pockets being a good place to see them. There are also a few young males that can be seen daily between the camps.
In terms of bird sightings, a young marshal eagle was seen hunting guinea fowl near the double crossing and many black chested snake eagles were seen on top of Balanites trees.
Speaking of new arrivals, we are expecting our shipment of branded metal water bottles any moment now. These will be issued to everyone on arrival and guests will be able to refill their bottles from the Reverse-Osmosis taps in the guest rooms or in the lounge area. This is another step towards eliminating as much plastic waste as possible from our camps. We plan to roll this system out across all of our properties eventually.
We are also now providing handmade chocolate pralines from Sweet Art Creations as room drops for Il Moran guests. These are all made in Kenya and are simply delicious.