Ecologists who are interested in using Pokémon Go to find new species (see Nature 535, 323–324 (2016) and 34; 2016) could also adopt the gameplay concept to set up wildlife-monitoring schemes that are fun for the public. Nature 537,
Laboratories cannot afford to hire millions of field assistants worldwide. A virtual platform could provide such a facility for free. Huge amounts of data can be gathered by video gamers, with the potential to engage with environmental issues on a much bigger scale.
These citizen scientists would also acquire a heightened awareness of natural history, taxonomy and contemporary environmental concerns.