The mysterious Wildebeest; Let’s break down this glorious wonder of nature.
A wildebeest has a large, boxy head with curving horns, a pointed beard and heavily built body. They can reach up to 8 feet in length, stand 4.5 feet tall and weigh up to 130 kilos.
The wildebeest calls Kenya’s Masai Mara and Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park home.
They travel in large herds and are actively grazing night and day.
According to National Geographic, up to 500,00 calves are born in February and March each year, at the start of the rainy season.
“When calves are born, they learn to walk within minutes of birth and within a day they are able to keep up with the herd”.
Wildebeest’s graze in mixed herds with Zebras but eat different parts of the same type of grass.
The Great Migration
During the great Migration over 1.5 million wildebeest and 300,000 Zebra’s moves to the northward in search for greener pastures.
This usually takes place in May or June and during this time, the predators are also happily waiting to feast on them through the river with Crocodiles waiting and hills with lions, cheetahs and leopards waiting.
The Wildebeests however are also able to apply tactics and fight the predators that may attack them.
One of the most outstanding tactics they apply is that some of the animals sleep while others remain active and look after the vulnerable ones.
They can also listen in on the alarm calls of other species.
Wildebeest are known to be very strong animals that fight and even injure lions.
During migration, the move close to 1,600 kilometers. This trip is so treacherous that about 250,000 die along the way.
Unfortunately, today, the Wildebeest population is threated by the human encroachment on their landscape where people demarcate their lands with fences and roads.
Wildebeests requires large connected landscapes which are very hard to maintain lately.