Pika

photo by Ken Schneider CC BY-NC

Coney, Rock Rabbit

Pika are very vocal small mammals (7-8 in long) with large ears. They can be found on rock faces and cliffs near mountain meadows above the treeline in western North America.

Pika have thick, peppery-brown fur that usually covers their very short tail. They use high-pitched calls and whistles to communicate and protect their territory. They eat grasses, weeds, and tall wildflowers, drying and stacking food for the winter and bringing it into their burrows once winter arrives.

Pika live in colonies but are very independent and defend their individual dens. They're active in daytime and don't hibernate in winter. Many breed twice, in spring and summer, giving birth to 2-6 young each time.

Could it be? Hoary Marmot also live in the mountains above the treeline, but they are 3 times as large as Pika.

Did you know? Pika are closely related to Rabbits, despite looking like a Hamster.

See Also: 13-lined Ground Squirrel, Bushy-tailed Woodrat, Hoary Marmot, Least Chipmunk, Marten, Red-tailed Chipmunk, Richardson's Ground Squirrel, Squirrel, Weasel, Yellow-bellied Marmot, Yellow-pine Chipmunk