Crown Tundra Legendary BirdsSource: iMore

The Crown Tundra expansion has finally arrived for Pokémon Sword and Shield, making one of the best Nintendo Switch games even better. The update brings a whole new area to explore and a new story centered around finding legendary Pokémon. One of the main goals of the Crown Tundra is to capture the Galarian variants of Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres. These birds have a fresh new look, new types, and are the first roaming Pokémon in Sword and Shield. They're a bit tricky to catch, but these tips will help you out.

Let Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres loose!

The first thing that you need to do to catch these birds is to let them loose. They won't appear or be catchable until you trigger a specific cut scene. As you navigate through the Crown Tundra, you'll see a large tree. This pink tree is the first place that you'll see the legendary birds.

  1. Head south in the Crown Tundra to Dyna Tree Hill.
  2. Watch the cutscene that has the legendary birds fight each other.

Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres will now appear in Galar, allowing you to catch them. But rather than being at a specific location, the birds roam around the Galar mainland, the Isle of Armor, and the Crown Tundra. Each area is home to one of the legendary birds.

Catch Galarian Articuno in the Crown Tundra

Crown Tundra ArticunoSource: iMore

Since you're already in the Crown Tundra, you might as well start with Galarian Articuno. The Psychic and Flying type bird soars around the Crown Tundra's main Wild Area.

  1. Head south from Frostpoint Field to enter the main Wild Area of the Crown Tundra.
  2. Continue to bike around until you spot Galarian Articuno.
  3. Get close enough to Galarian Articuno that you can get its attention with a whistle/bell.
  4. Press the left joystick down to whistle or ring your bike's bell.
  5. Repeatedly press the left joystick to get the real Galarian Articuno's attention.
  6. Catch Galarian Articuno like any other wild Pokémon.

Galarian Articuno is unique in that it uses its psychic powers to create copies of itself. These are to trick you into chasing the wrong one. When I encountered Galarian Articuno, I spammed the bike bell until the fakes went away and the real one engaged in a battle. The real Galarian Articuno is the one that continues to wave its wings. If Articuno starts flying away, just chase it and repeat the steps above.

Catch Galarian Zapdos in the mainland Wild Area

Crown Tundra ZapdosSource: iMore

Galarian Zapdos is a speedy bird that's Fighting and Flying Type. Unlike the other legendary birds, Galarian Zapdos runs on its legs. It appears in the Wild Area on the Galar mainland, as in the Wild Area that you could explore before any of the DLC came out. The Wild Area isn't that big and lacks the obstacles of the Crown Tundra and Isle of Armor, but Galarian Zapdos is fast like a roadrunner.

  1. Fly to the mainland Wild Area.
  2. Continue to bike around until you spot Galarian Zapdos.
  3. Get close enough to Galarian Zapdos that you can get its attention with a whistle/bell.
  4. Press the left joystick down to whistle or ring your bike's bell.
  5. Catch Galarian Zapdos like any other wild Pokémon.

Catch Galarian Moltres on the Isle of Armor

Crown Tundra MoltresSource: iMore

Galarian Moltres appears on the Isle of Armor and is Dark and Flying type. It soars over land and sea, making it difficult to catch up to. Biking on the seas around the Isle of Armor is a bit slower than biking on land, so I recommend catching up to Galarian Moltres when it's above land.

  1. Fly to the Isle of Armor.
  2. Continue to bike around until you spot Galarian Moltres.
  3. Get close enough to Galarian Moltres that you can get its attention with a whistle/bell.
  4. Catch Galarian Moltres like any other wild Pokémon.

Some tips for catching Galarian Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres

The three legendary birds don't stay in a specific spot within their respective areas. Instead, they fly or run around quickly. They move faster than you on your bike, even when boosting, so you'll have to cut them off as they turn or change directions.

Make sure that you upgrade your bike, or you'll have no hope of catching the legendary birds.

If you run into another wild Pokémon while chasing one of the legendary birds, you can just battle it or run away and continue the chase. The bird you're chasing doesn't gain more ground during the battle from what I can tell.

The birds seem to run or fly on a preset path around their respective regions. You can chase them on their paths to study their tactics then cut them off. For example, Galarian Moltres flies by the Dojo on the Isle of Armor. You can follow it as it makes landfall then cut it off in front of the Dojo.

A new adventure

Pokemon Sword Expansion Pass Hero

Pokémon Sword and Shield Isle of Armor expansion

More Pokémon to play with

The Isle of Armor adds a new area to Pokémon Sword and Shield, a new Pokédex, and brings back many of your favorite Pokémon. It's an excellent way to extend your Pokémon.

Pokémon Sword and Shield


At this time, it's not confirmed how much the Mark Charm increases your chances of encountering Pokémon with marks.

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