Pidgeys aren’t exactly the most coveted of “Pokemon Go” creatures, but that’s still not stopping most of us from wondering exactly how much candy is needed to evolve a Pidgeotto. My sense is that the curiosity stems less from wanting to use a Pidgeot to defend your local gym and more from wanting to level up quickly; the so-called “Lucky Egg evolution hack” is best accomplished with common, easy to catch Pokemon, and, well… Pidgey is about as common as it gets. Still, though, you’ll have to put in some work in order to make it happen.

Here’s the deal: A Pidgey requires 12 candies to evolve into a Pidgeotto, and a Pidgeotto requires 50 candies to evolve into Pidgeot. All told, you’ll need 62 candies to take a Pidgey through its entire evolutionary process. So how many Pidgeys do you actually need to catch and transfer in order to make that happen? Since you earn three candies for every Pokemon you catch and one for every one you transfer, the math works out as follows:

**Pidgey #1:**Three pieces of candy (for catching); three total. For the sake of this example, consider this one the Pidgey you’ll evolve — which means that you won’t trade it for an additional candy.**Pidgey #2:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); seven pieces total.**Pidgey #3:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 11 pieces total.**Pidgey #4:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 15 pieces total.

**Then evolve your Pidgey.**

This will leave you with one Pidgeotto and three pieces of candy leftover. So, starting with those three pieces, our numbers will start to look like this:

**Pidgey #5:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); seven pieces total.**Pidgey #6:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 11 pieces total.**Pidgey #7:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 15 pieces total.**Pidgey #8:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 19 pieces total.**Pidgey #9:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 23 pieces total.**Pidgey #10:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 27 pieces total.**Pidgey #11:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 31 pieces total.**Pidgey #12:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 35 pieces total.**Pidgey #13:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 39 pieces total.**Pidgey #14:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 43 pieces total.**Pidgey #15:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 47 pieces total.**Pidgey #16:**Four pieces of candy (three for catching, one for trading); 51 pieces total.

**Then evolve your Pidgeotto.**

This will leave you with one Pidgeot and one piece of candy leftover. The grand totals of everything you acquired will look like this:

**63 pieces of candy**, 62 of which you used to evolve your Pidgey.**16 Pidgeys caught,**15 of which you traded to Professor Willow for candy.**One Pidgey evolved.****One Pidgeotto evolved.****One Pidgeot acquired.**

Now, if you *really* want to get a lot of bang for your buck, what you’ll do is combine this knowledge with the aforementioned Lucky Egg evolution hack— that is, you’ll catch all those Pidgeys ahead of time and trade ‘em in for candy, activate a Lucky Egg, and *then* get evolving. Doing so will earn you a boatload more XP, which will in turn help your Trainer level up faster.

Of course, there’s nothing that says your end goal has to be leveling up; I think there’s actually something to be said simply for the joy of catching Pokemon. I haven’t even set foot in a gym because the idea of competing with other players gives me major anxiety. I prefer exploring my surroundings and encountering Pokemon in the wild; it’s actually — dare I say? — kind of relaxing.

But hey, you do you. Whatever your purpose for evolving Pidgeotto might be, go forth and have fun. After all, isn’t that the point?

*Images: Lucia Peters/Bustle; Giphy (2)*