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Pokémon Go Swablu, evolution Altaria and how to get a yellow Swablu explained

What to do with all those Swablu you've been catching in Pokémon Go.

In Pokémon Go Swablu was one of the last creatures to be introduced from Gen 3, arriving in the Flying and Dragon update of February 2018.

Swablu has many things that makes it unique - such as being one of the very few creatures requiring above the usual 25, 50 or 100 Candy to evolve, and having a rare shiny variant, dubbed the yellow Swablu.

What is important about Swablu and evolution Altaria in Pokémon Go

Swablu is a Normal and Flying type , and at the time of writing, is a very common spawn during daytime hours regardless of weather or location.

Anecdotally some players say it's more common during the wind, but we've found it appearing regularly during daytime hours regardless of weather (from here in the UK).

Though Swablu was introduced as part of an event celebrating the 'final' wave of Gen 3 creatures added to the game, whereby all wild spawns would only be from that generation, it appears to be sticking around in high numbers.

It's just as well since Swablu requires 400 Candy to evolve, joining the ranks of Magikarp and Wailmer as common creatures with huge Candy demands for their evolutions.

When you have enough Candy, Swablu evolves into Altaria, changing its type into Flying and Dragon. Despite being a member of the elusive Dragon type, and the high amount of Candy to evolve, Altaria is a fairly weak creature, so don't sweat it too much if you don't have a high IV Swablu at hand.

Though right now it's a common spawn in the right conditions, there are a few things to note if you're looking to farm them:

  • Swablu spawns tend to drop in the evening and nightime, going on discussion on the Silph Road subreddit.
  • Since it is a common spawn that's easy to catch, there's a very strong chance Pokemon Go Plus catch attempts will work, making life easier if you're looking to stockpile Candy for that eventual evolution.
  • Swablu is available as a Tier 1 Raid (with only 2766 CP), which comes recommended if you're after a high IV creature when you have enough Candy to evolve.
  • As a Buddy Pokemon, Swablu only requires 1km per Candy drop.

Looking for more Pokémon go tips and tricks? The latest events are Legendary Week and the return of Party Hat Pikachu for Pokémon Day, with the next Community Day to come in March. There are also even more Raid bosses out in circulation now, and these follow the final wave of Gen 3 Pokémon arriving in February, which introduced Castform and Swablu, as well as changes to 2km, 5km and 10km Egg charts, region exclusives, Buddy distances and Shinies. Ever-expanding Pokédex completionists, meanwhile, might want to read about the various Special Items available as well as the various methods for determining Eevee evolutions, too.

How to get a yellow Swablu in Pokémon Go

Swablu is one of the few creatures available as a shiny Pokémon, changing its blue body colour into yellow. Our shiny Pokémon article explains some of the nuance of these very elusive creature types.

Evolving into Altaria will keep that same yellow colour scheme, as shown in this video by Cychreus Gaming:

Early signs suggest it's as rare as other shiny creatures in the game - that's to say, very rare - so don't hold out on catching one anytime soon.

Additionally, there is no current sign you can get a yellow Swablu from Raids, much like fellow Gen 3 creature Aggron - suggesting catching as many as possible and keeping your fingers crossed will be the best strategy right now.

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About the Author
Matthew Reynolds avatar

Matthew Reynolds


Matthew Reynolds edited guides and other helpful things at Eurogamer from 2010 - 2023. When he wasn't doing that, he was out and about playing Pokémon Go or continuing to amass his amiibo collection.

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