Human Journey

How to “Meet Your Neighbours”

Between tiny sizes, detailed camouflage, and an unbelievable ability simply to hide, it’s easy to never notice most of the species living around us every day. The photographers of Meet Your Neighbours are on a mission to change that.

As part of this year’s BioBlitz from National Geographic and the U.S. National Park Service at Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado, this team of photographers are going out with volunteers and scientists as they work to identify every living species of plant and animal they can find.

What Meet Your Neighbours brings specially to the table is a simple but striking method of recording these creatures. Placed against a brilliantly lit white background the animals are isolated from their surroundings, “encouraging appreciation of the subject as an individual rather than a species,” as the group says on their website. “Their own form constitutes the composition.”

In the above gallery, see the photographers at work and the beautiful images they are able to create right out in the great outdoors. Then get outside and meet some of your own neighbors and realize how much you gain by doing it. Again as the group’s website says, “The project is dedicated to reconnecting people with the wildlife on their own doorsteps – and enriching their lives in the process.”


Andrew Howley is a longtime contributor to the National Geographic blog, with a particular focus on archaeology and paleoanthropology generally, and ancient rock art in particular. In 2018 he became Communications Director at Adventure Scientists, founded by Nat Geo Explorer Gregg Treinish. Over 11 years at the National Geographic Society, Andrew worked in various ways to share the stories of NG explorers and grantees online. He also produced the Home Page of for several years, and helped manage the Society's Facebook page during its breakout year of 2010. He studied Anthropology with a focus on Archaeology from the College of William & Mary in Virginia. He has covered expeditions with NG Explorers-in-Residence Mike Fay, Enric Sala, and Lee Berger. His personal interests include painting, running, and reading about history. You can follow him on Twitter @anderhowl and on Instagram @andrewjhowley.
  • Krista Schlyer

    Thanks for this great story Andrew!

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