Pokemon Go players have discovered hundreds of new Pokemon "nests" around the world due to an update in the game's map data.
Players of the popular mobile game have discovered dozens of new "nests" popping up in local parks and green spaces. Nests are locations where Pokemon of the same species consistently spawn at, often times in mass quantities. Pokemon Go cycles which Pokemon spawn at nests every two weeks, but they provide a consistent source for players looking to stock up on Candies or go hunting for Shiny Pokemon.
The reason for the sudden influx of nest locations (which haven't changed much since Pokemon Go first came out in 2016) is tied to the game's use of Open Street Maps (OSM), an open source map API. The game recently updated the metadata from OSM, which specifies whether an area of the map is a park or green space. This information is continuously updated by OSM users, although it appears that Pokemon Go hasn't been as diligent about pulling this data from OSM. This is the first time that Pokemon Go developers have updated the OSM metadata since they switched to the OSM API las year.
So - what does all this technical talk mean for Pokemon Go players? Well, there's a much greater chance that certain green spaces in your neighborhood are now the home to a specific species of Pokemon. Public parks, public gardens, golf courses, vinyards, orchards, playgrounds, meadows and grassland have all been associated with nests in the past.
When exploring whether your park had a Pokemon nest added, keep in mind that we're currently in the middle of the Earth Day event, which has increased the spawns of many Ground, Grass, and Water-Type Pokemon. Nests typically feature multiple Pokemon spawning in clusters, and often have species that don't typically spawn in that area. So, if your park has a pond and you see a couple of Magikarp spawn near it, that's not a good indicator of a nest. However, if that area suddenly has a ton of Magmar, then you probably have a Pokemon nest on your hands.
This change should benefit all Pokemon Go players, regardless as to where they live. More Pokemon spawns is always a good thing, and this should give players more reason to go out and explore their neighborhoods!