pika

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Related to Pica (species): Australian magpie, Gymnorhina tibicen

pika

(pī`kə), short-haired mammal related to rabbitsrabbit,
name for herbivorous mammals of the family Leporidae, which also includes the hare and the pika. Rabbits and hares have large front teeth, short tails, and large hind legs and feet adapted for running or jumping.
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 and hareshare,
name for certain herbivorous mammals of the family Leporidae, which also includes the rabbit and pika. The name is applied especially to species of the genus Lepus, sometimes called the true hares.
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, also called mouse hare and rock rabbit. Pikas live above the timber line in the mountains of N Asia and W North America. The pika differs from the rabbit in that its body is smaller and the ears on its blunt head are shorter; also unlike the rabbit, the fore and hind limbs are about equal in length. The pika moves with a scampering gait. Its fur varies from red to gray and covers the soles of its feet. Pikas generally shelter in communities beneath rocks, although some Asian species burrow. Their diet consists primarily of green plants. Because food is difficult to obtain in winter in the harsh tundra environment, pikas cut, sun-dry, and store vegetation for winter use. Pikas are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Mammalia, order Lagomorpha, family Ochotonidae.

pika

[′pī·kə]
(vertebrate zoology)
Any member of the family Ochotonidae, which includes 14 species of lagomorphs resembling rabbits but having a vestigial tail and short, rounded ears.