The month of January, February and early march, has been a season of great sightings in the Mara, despite the absence of the wildebeest. There are people who associate the Mara only with the migration. But there is plenty to see. All you need is different eyes.
This year, just like the last few, has seen the number of wildebeests calving in the Mara going up. We have been seeing many wildebeests with young calves on the conservancies of Olare-Motorogi and Naboisho and also on the middle eastern edge of the reserve. These were calving at the same time as the ones in Serengeti, though they are few.
Because of the number of cats and other predators in the areas mentioned above, predation on the calves has been quite high. They are often taken as easy prey. Some of the lion prides, like Engoyanai, which has few small cubs, has taken advantage of the season of plenty to feed their young. we saw so many hunts by all predators since the calving started.
Big cats sighting in general has been great. Fig, the leopard, on OM conservancy continued to treat us and our guests with great shows. She and her cubs are always a joy when spotted. Kaboso, Bahati, Siri and Lorian, our other leopards in the reserve also gave us good sightings. We had good cheetah sightings over the period too. The 5 male cheetah coalition was seen in the reserve through out the period also were another 3 cheetahs, 2 males and a female who are siblings found on OM. We also had Malaika and her cubs entertain us, though we lost her early this month and have not been seen again.
General game viewing was great, with the most of February being the rutting season for Topis. They were seen all over the Mara in their usual “leks”. It would require you to sit and watch them for a while to understand how their courtship works. although most places in the reserve now have tall grass, there are many places too with short grass, and this is where most herbivores are found.
We were worried earlier in February that the Mara river will stop flowing, when the water level went really low, but rains just came in time and now its running normally.
Most of the guests i guided over this period were professional photographers, all of whom left with hundreds of images, some which were are shots.
You can see some of the photos by one photographer on this link; https://lightroom.adobe.com/shares/b15c1dffb3f14489b10d298e1768184c