This American pika (Ochotona princeps), is returning from foraging and collected a large load (in pika standards!) and is returning to the haypile.
Pikas are really quite amazing and appear to have loads of energy. During a short growing season at high elevations, this pika collects a variety of grasses and forbs (herbaceous broad-leaved plants) and carries the collection back to their den where they store the food in a cache(also known as a haypile).
Although they have been known to dig snow tunnels to gather food during witner (based on research in Colorado) they gather and store enough food during the short summer, to sustain and feed themselves during the winter. The activity of gathering food for storage is called “haying”.
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