Location: West of Great Rift Valley, 130km west-north-west of Arusha. A corridor extends westwards to within 8km of Lake Victoria and a northern sector extending to the Kenya border.
Climate: Rainfall is mainly restricted to November-May with peaks in December and March/April. Mean annual temperature 20.8°C and mean annual precipitation 1210mm recorded at 1,150m. Rainfall tends to decrease towards the east and increase to the north and west, reaching 950mm annually in the western corridor near to Lake Victoria, and 1150mm annually in the extreme north of the park near to the border with Kenya.
Most well known for: The annual migration which is best viewed during the months December through to April, the wildebeest, gazelle and zebra descend on the Serengeti Plains having followed the sweet smell of rains to find lush feeding grounds for the herds; most of the female population of wildebeest will be pregnant at this stage. In February in the space of 2 weeks approximately 90% of the wildebeest females give birth to a calf, with the sudden excess of “easy” prey the predators are on high alert and there is excessive hunting in this area. As the rainy period ends the wildebeest once again get on the move heading towards the western corridor, leaving the plains to the dry season, while the migration involves over 1.5 million animals there are resident herds which stay in specific areas of the park allowing for game viewing all year round but not in the famous herds that the migrational period promises. Serengeti is an excellent place to spot the ever elusive leopard and is also host to good lion, cheetah and hyena populations.
Over 350 recorded bird species include 34 species of raptors, six vultures, kori bustard Choriotis kori, ostrich Struthio camelus and lesser flamingo Phoenicopterus minor (LR), and several with a comparatively restricted distribution such as rufous-tailed weaver Histurgops ruficauda.