The Maasai Mara National Reserve is a large game reserve in south-western Kenya, contiguous with the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania.It is named after the Maasai people and their description of the area when looked at from afar: "Mara", which is Maa (Maasai language) for "spotted," an apt description for the circles of trees, scrub, savanna, and cloud shadows that mark the area.
It is famous for its exceptional population of lions, leopards and cheetahs, game, and the annual migration of zebra, Thomson's gazelle, and wildebeest to and fro the Serengeti every year from July to October, known as the Great Migration.
Wildebeest, topi, zebra, and Thomson's gazelle migrate into and occupy the Mara reserve, from the Serengeti plains to the south and Loita plains in the pastoral ranches to the north-east, from July to October or later. Herds of all three species are also resident in the reserve.
Rainbow at Masaai Mara
All members of the "Big Five" (lion, leopard, African elephant, African buffalo, and Black Rhinoceros) are found in the Maasai Mara. The population of Black rhinos was fairly numerous until 1960, but it was severely depleted by poaching in the 1970s and early 1980s, dropping to a low of 15 individuals. Numbers have been slowly increasing, but the population was still only up to an estimated 23 in 1999.[