The Serengeti region covers 30,000 square kilometres and extends into south-western Kenya. In the time available we could, of course, visit only a small part of it. The Kenyan part of the Serengeti is known as the Maasai Mara. In the Maasai language Serengeti means “endless plains”, a description that fits very well.
Although our main focus was on the birds we also devoted plenty of time to the mammals, particularly the cats. One day we thought we had done well to see 22 cats of four different species (12 Lions, 2 Leopards, 7 Cheetahs and a Serval) but the following day we saw twice as many! The Cheetahs were an adult female with six young cubs that were going to be a serious challenge for her to feed and keep safe.
Our room at the Serena Safari Lodge
The plains are studded with isolated granite outcrops, known as kopjes
Lions - lying in the shade
Yellow-throated Sandgrouse - one of three sandgrouse species that we saw
Yellow-throated Longclaw - that really is a yellow throat!
Zebras - thousands of them
Sharpe's Starling - a fruit eater
Spotted Hyaena - they always look a bit menacing
African Fish Eagle - this one was remarkably confiding
Eland - the largest of the African antelopes
White-bellied Bustard - a male of the subspecies erlangeri
Serval Cat - its long legs enable it hunt in the long grass
Cut-throat Finch - only the male has a red band across its throat
Hippopotamus - one of the most dangerous large animals in Africa
Hildebrandt's Starling - an East African endemic
Usambiro Barbet - possibly just a subspecies of d'Arnaud's Barbet
Another Lion - we saw more than 80 of them during the tour