Wildebeest and zebra cautiously cross the crocodile infested Mara river, unfortunately not everyone makes it across. Wildebeest often graze in mixed herds with zebra, which gives heightened awareness of potential predators. Numerous documentaries feature wildebeest crossing rivers, with many being eaten by crocodiles or drowning in the attempt. Recent research has shown a herd of wildebeest possesses what is known as a “swarm intelligence”, whereby the animals systematically explore and overcome the obstacle as one.
Zebras may travel or migrate to better watered areas. Plains zebras are reputed to have the longest land migration of any mammal in Africa. When migrating, they appear to rely on some memory of the locations where foraging conditions were best and may predict conditions months after their arrival.
Crocodiles are ambush predators, waiting for fish or land animals to come close, then rushing out to attack.
Filmed by Brian Heath, executive director of the Mara Conservancy, a non-profit Kenyan organization responsible for managing the Mara Triangle of the Maasai Mara National Reserve. Brian’s intimate knowledge of the Mara has allowed him to capture some of the most compelling African wildlife videos.
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