Right now, more than 1.5 million wildebeest are delivering new calves at the rate of 8,000 newborns per day. They are eagerly photographed by thousands of tourists who have come to watch this incredible synchronized birthing event take place in southern Serengeti, Tanzania. The next six weeks will deliver almost half a million baby wildebeest calves onto the soft grasses of the Ndutu plains.
Not all will survive of course. This is a booming time for tourists taking photos of cute little calves, but also for the predators that enjoy a feast of plenty. Hyenas, jackals, lion, birds of prey and many others are out in force as the birthing begins. This is one reason why it is thought that wildebeest all have their babies within the same short time period. They hope to overwhelm the opposition with choice, and hopefully save their own babies in the muddle.
So if you can't time your safari for the great migration as it crosses from Tanzania into Kenya, the birthing is an amazing alternative time to witness a spectacle that is hard to put into words. An additional bonus for those living in colder climes, is the sunny escape February in northern Tanzania offers!
Image of wildebeest birthing, Ndutu, Tanzania - Getty Images/Annie Katz