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Learning about our "Unexpected Neighbors" in Bogota City

Updated: May 18, 2021

The Colombian Embassies in Canada and the United States and the Permanent Missions of Colombia to the United Nations and to the Organization of American States highlighted Colombia's biodiversity in a virtual discussion about the documentary Unexpected Neighbors

As part of the 18 virtual activities by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to commemorate World Environment Day during the month of June, the Colombian Embassies in Canada and the United States and the Permanent Missions of Colombia to the United Nations and to the Organization of American States highlighted the biodiversity of Colombia through a virtual conversation about the documentary Unexpected Neighbors, a production by the Bogota Mayor's Office and the Aqueduct and Sewerage Bogota Company.


The event, moderated by the Colombian Ambassador to the United States, Francisco Santos, featured an introductory message from Guillermo Fernández de Soto the Ambassador to the United Nations in New York, Alejandro Ordoñez, Ambassador to the Organization of American States, and Mónica Beltrán Chargé d'Affaires ai in Canada.

They all reiterated Colombia's commitment to the protection of of biodiversity and its support to the fight against climate change.

During the discussion, the director and filmmaker Mauricio Vélez Domínguez and the President and CEO of the Wildlife Conservation Society Cristian Samper highlighted the importance of the Colombian documentary for the healthful coexistence between animals and humans and biodiversity in Colombia.

Panelists shared with more than 60 virtual viewers some of their documentary favorite moments and highlighted the impact that this type of products can have in changing society's perceptions and behaviors, contributing to conservation and protection of animals in cities.

Mauricio Vélez shared his experience creating, producing and delivering the documentary, as well as some details about the script writing process, the participation of film experts, researchers and a committed production team in taking the best shots for the documentary.

Cristian Samper, contributed interesting elements to the conversation. Data on biodiversity in Colombia and information about species present in urban areas. He also shared views on what citizens should take into account to maintain biological balance .

If you missed this virtual chat, you can see it here.

The Colombian Promotion Plan Abroad is a cultural diplomacy tool of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Colombia aimed to support foreign policy objectives of the Colombian government.

About Unexpected Neighbors

The film allows the viewer to discover the surprising natural world of Bogotá. From the dramatic daily fight for the survival of the animals that live in our houses, gardens and neighborhoods, to the scenes never before filmed and that we do not even expect. Cusumbos that roam the forests, foxes in streets searching for food, eagles fishing in Los Novios Park, a pair of curlews nesting on a soccer field, an owl hunting in a parking lot or the fascinating life cycle of winter roaches.The story is told as "a day in the life of" the unexpected animals that inhabit Bogotá.

Using the latest cinematographic techniques such as gyroscopic cameras, time lapse and slow motion control, Unexpected Neighbors accompanies the animals and plants that inhabit the capital through their daily adventures creating an immersive experience for the viewer.

All this in a context of Bogotá's changing seasons, from the drama of the rain and a vibrant, colorful and dynamic city, to a lush paradise covered in sun and forests. The new technology allows us see unexpected angles and impossible perspectives giving an intimate atmosphere to the sequences and, nevertheless, maintaining the mystery; A world that despite being so close to us - sometimes even just below our feet - we are completely unaware of.


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