James's Cacnea

James's Cacnea
コジロウのサボネア Kojirō's Sabonea
Bag Poké Ball SV Sprite.png
James Cacnea.png
James's Cacnea
Debuts in A Poached Ego!
Caught at Petalburg Woods
Gender Unknown*
Ability Unknown
Current location Training with Gardenia
This Pokémon has not evolved.
Voice actor Japanese English
As Cacnea Katsuyuki Konishi Lindsey Warner
Michele Knotz

James's Cacnea (Japanese: コジロウのサボネア Kojirō's Sabonea), was the first Pokémon James caught during his travels through Hoenn, and his seventh overall. He caught it immediately after releasing his Weezing.


Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire


Cacnea meeting James

Cacnea was caught by James in A Poached Ego!. After Team Rocket found a group of Ekans and Koffing being hunted by a Pokémon poacher named Rico, Jessie and James permanently released their Arbok and Weezing to protect the Ekans and Koffing. Before releasing Arbok and Weezing, Team Rocket were chased by some Beedrill because they had landed in the Beedrill's nesting place. Cacnea had been walking by. When it saw that they were in need of help, it used Pin Missile to drive the Beedrill away. In gratitude, James gave it a bag of cookies. However, the bag was closed. Later, after defeating the poacher, Team Rocket encountered Cacnea on a road. It gave James the bag, and James opened the bag and gave Cacnea a cookie. James asked Cacnea if it would like to join him, and it agreed, jumping into his arms and hurting him with its spikes.

Cacnea had its first battle against Ash and his friends in Tree's a Crowd, battling Ash's future Treecko. Treecko jumped up to Team Rocket and taunted Cacnea into using its Pin Missile on their balloon, which ended up causing Team Rocket to blast off.

In Seeing is Believing!, Cacnea was used to battle Jessie's Cascoon in order to raise her experience so she would evolve. Even though Cascoon won, she did not evolve. Cacnea was later used in the fight against Ash and his friends, where Cascoon evolved into Dustox.

Cacnea showing affection

In The Spheal of Approval, Cacnea and Seviper fought against Tabitha's Mightyena. Jessie commanded Seviper to use Poison Tail while James had Cacnea use Pin Missile, but Mightyena proved too powerful for the two and sent them flying back.

In The Bicker the Better, Cacnea was used in a Double Battle along with Seviper against Oscar and Andi's Nidoking and Nidoqueen. Seviper ends up using Wrap on Cacnea, which caused Jessie and James to argue, allowing Oscar and Andi to take the win with dual Hyper Beam attacks, sending Team Rocket flying. Team Rocket later encounters Ash and May and agree to do a tag battle with them, with Ash using Corphish and May using Skitty. Cacnea and Corphish end up working well together and begin to get an advantage over the other two. Jessie soon sends out Dustox to help win and the battle quickly grows out of control when attacks start to fly undirected. Meowth takes the opportunity to try to capture Pikachu and has Seviper and Cacnea use Haze and Sandstorm. Pikachu is rescued and Team Rocket is sent blasting off.

In Gaining Groudon, Cacnea battled two Crawdaunt belonging to Team Aqua Grunts. It easily defeated the two Rogue Pokémon with Pin Missile.

Cacnea stuck in Jessie's hair

Kanto Battle Frontier

In The Saffron Con, Jessie borrowed Cacnea for the Saffron City Pokémon Contest. Jessie called out Cacnea in an attempt to bond with it, but it was immediately frightened of her and jumped onto James. James desperately tried to break its embrace and Cacnea reluctantly jumped onto Jessie and became tangled up in her hair. Later that night Jessie and Cacnea agreed to enter the Contest together, even though they had to cut Jessie's hair to get Cacnea unstuck.

In A Hurdle for Squirtle, Jessie used Cacnea in the Appeals Round of the Saffron Contest. Cacnea and Jessie started by running toward each other and hugging. The painful embrace moved the crowd to tears in reaction to how close Jessie and Cacnea seemed to be. Jessie told Cacnea to use Pin Missile and the pins wind upward and collide, creating an explosion similar to that of fireworks. Both Meowth and James were amazed at Jessie's performance. Lilian went to congratulate Jessie but noticed that Cacnea was still attached to her and she was not moving at all. Lilian tapped her and Jessie fell to the floor, paralyzed with pain. Jessie was rushed back into the operating room by Chansey.

Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl

James leaving Cacnea with Gardenia

In Sinnoh, it was replaced as James's main battler by Carnivine. However, it was used alongside Seviper, Dustox, and Carnivine in several all out battles against Ash and his friends and to guard the Flying-type Pokémon that Team Rocket stole in A Staravia is Born!. It was only seen battling without Carnivine a few times in Sinnoh. It and Carnivine hurt James a lot in Sinnoh because they both tended to be affectionate at the same time. Cacnea was used often in Sinnoh similarly to Jessie's Seviper as Team Rocket's escapist rogue via the use of Sandstorm.

Cacnea using Drain Punch, under the command of Gardenia

In Dawn's Early Night!, Jessilina used Cacnea and Mime Jr. for the Double Performance required during the Hearthome Contest. Cacnea used Needle Arm, which Mime Jr. Mimics before using Tickle on Jessie as both Cacnea and Mime Jr. hug and tickle Jessie, spinning her around the stage. Cacnea fires Pin Missile, which Mime Jr. mimics, into the sky creating fireworks. This performance got Jessie a high score, placing her among the Coordinators moving on to the Battle Stage.

In Once There Were Greenfields, Eterna Gym Leader Gardenia and James battled Ash and Dawn. Gardenia told James to tell Cacnea to use Drain Punch, but James said the Pokémon didn't know that move. Through her explanation on how to do it, he did it anyway, and Cacnea pulled off the move. However, it was unable to duplicate the success. Through Meowth, Cacnea explained that the first Drain Punch was only a fluke. Gardenia suggested that James give Cacnea to her to train. He originally declined, but in the end, he realized that his lack of skill would only hold Cacnea back from its full potential. Therefore, he heartbreakingly left Cacnea with the Gym Leader to become stronger.

Cacnea appeared again in a flashback in Barry's Busting Out All Over!, where it was shown battling Barry's Empoleon in a Gym battle. It was also revealed to have mastered Drain Punch, making James very pleased.

Pokémon Journeys: The Series

Cacnea appeared in a fantasy in Rocket Revengers! when Team Rocket reminisced about their old Pokémon.

Personality and characteristics

To James's frustration, each time it was called out to battle, Cacnea would affectionately embrace its Trainer, instead of focusing on the task at hand. When it did battle, it was fairly formidable, but usually lost to Ash or one of his friends. Like most of James's Pokémon, Cacnea had a great relationship with him and strived to please him. Cacnea is shown to be extremely loyal to James, demonstrated in Sweet Baby James, when James ordered Cacnea to attack Seviper and it did so without hesitation.

In Maxxed Out!, it was shown that it cannot swim.

Moves used

Using Drain Punch
Move First Used In
Pin Missile A Poached Ego!
Needle Arm A Mudkip Mission
Sandstorm ZigZag Zangoose!
Drain Punch Once There Were Greenfields
A shows that the move was used recently, unless all moves fit this case or there are fewer than five known moves.


Official artwork from
Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire
Official artwork from
Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl


  • For DP025, Professor Oak's Big Pokémon Encyclopedia is about James's Cacnea. He writes this Pokémon senryū about it: サボネアは ふれるとチクチク トゲトゲよ Cacnea, prickly spikes, when it touches.
  • Cacnea was the first Pokémon James caught onscreen. His Weezing, Growlie, and Victreebel were caught prior to his appearance in the series or captured off-screen.
  • Cacnea is the first of Jessie and James's Pokémon (including Meowth) to learn a new move while under their ownership.
  • Excluding his temporary Pokémon, Cacnea is James's only Grass-type that is not fully evolved.
  • Cacnea is the only of Jessie and James's Pokémon that was caught outside the original series that has met Arbok and Weezing.
  • Cacnea is the first Pokémon belonging to a main character other than Ash to be left with another Trainer for training.
  • Cacnea is the first Pokémon belonging to a main character to be captured in the same episode in which its Trainer also releases a Pokémon.
  • Aside from Wobbuffet, Cacnea is the oldest Pokémon of Team Rocket to still be owned by them.

Related articles

For more information on this Pokémon's species, see Cacnea.

  This article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.