International Journal of
Biodiversity and Conservation

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Biodivers. Conserv.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-243X
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJBC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 679

Article in Press

Evidence from GPS collars reveal a novel movement pattern and site fidelity for wildebeest migratory population in the Serengeti-Mara Ecosystem

Benjamin Chow-Battersby, Emmanuel Hosiana Masenga, Adrian Hock Beng Loo, Aung Kyi San, Edward Mtarima Koh3 and Eblate Ernest Mjingo

  •  Received: 29 March 2024
  •  Accepted: 18 June 2024
Ungulate migrations in ecology cover many aspects of which movement behaviour and site fidelity applies to species. This study aimed to uncover whether the Loliondo/Pololeti and Laetoli/Kakesio wildebeest herds showed migratory behaviour and site fidelity during wet and dry seasons within the Serengeti-Mara Ecosystem. Six female wildebeest were immobilized by a wildlife veterinarian and then fitted with GPS collars from Savannah Wildlife Tracking Ltd, Kenya. The results showed that the wildebeest herds utilizing the LGCA (Loliondo Game Controlled Area) are no longer a resident population, rather a migratory sub-population that moves between Angata Kheri (Tanzania side) and Keekorok (Kenya side) of the plains. The two herds exhibited a high percentage of site fidelity covering the wet season period within the Angata Kheri and Laetoli/Kakesio areas which indicates that they are two distinct herds. Based on these facts, the study concludes that the two herds performed different movement behavior including linear movements for Loliondo/Pololeti and circular movement patterns for Laetoli/Kakesio. Therefore, the study recommends that constant monitoring of these wildebeest herds by using GPS collars is important in determining the large-scale movement behavior of the two study herds.

Keywords: GPS collars, Serengeti-Mara Ecosystem, Site fidelity, Wildebeest Migration