The millions of zebras and wildebeests of the Great Migration too often get all the attention when we talk about the Serengeti. And why not? They’ve certainly got the numbers on their side, and their ground-shaking annual progress has understandably been dubbed one of the top ten wonders of the world. But for many people, the Serengeti is all about the lions who call it home.
The Serengeti: A Hub for Lion Research and Conservation
Lions are the focus for Craig Packer, generally regarded as the world’s foremost lion expert, who has been heading up the Serengeti Lion Project for over three decades – one of the longest continuous field studies of a species. Tanzania is home to the world’s largest population of lions, and Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, may be the world’s largest lion sanctuary, with a population estimated at 3,000. However, even the largest of populations is under considerable threat from habitat loss and human-wildlife conflict. National Geographic estimates that from an estimated 450,000 lions in Africa in the 1940’s, as few as 20,000 exist today.
Organizations like the AWF and Packer’s Serengeti Lion Project are at the forefront of lion research and lion conservation efforts. Bushtracks has been fortunate to arrange time with key researchers on the Serengeti Lion Project, like Ingela Jansson and Daniel Rosengren, on its upcoming Africa by Private Jet expedition.
A Stunning Online Photo Gallery of the Vumbi Pride
If you can’t meet with the researchers yourself, you can see the world of the Serengeti lion through the expert eyes of National Geographic photographer Michael “Nick” Nichols with his remarkable photo gallery of the Vumbi pride taken over a 2 year period. Nichols used robot tanks for up-close images, and infrared light to capture the lions’ nocturnal activities and the result is a stunning series of images that explores the harsh beauty of the life of a single pride in the Serengeti.
A Serengeti Safari Away from the Crowds at Lamai
There’s an excellent way to combine a Serengeti safari with lion sightings, and that is to include Lamai Serengeti camp in your plans. Tucked among the rocks of the Kogakuria Kopje, Lamai is in between Kenya’s Masai Mara and the Mara River. Grazing wildebeest frequent the grassy plains, and between late July and October, cross the Mara River a few miles from camp. Unlike the southern Serengeti, Lamai remains green year-round, offering resident plains game fresh water and verdant grasslands throughout the year, and supporting predators like lions and leopards. The spectacular setting, and only 12 rooms, means you will enjoy a very personal Serengeti experience, away from the crowds. And best of all, you will have the opportunity to observe Serengeti lions in an area which is one of the best kept secrets of the Serengeti.
Discover Bushtracks Top Serengeti Migration Safari
Featuring Lions and Lamai