A pika (Ochotona collaris) with a Potentilla sp. (cinquefoil) flower in its mouth. Potentilla, the genus it is carrying, is quite high in tannin concentration, so this pika is likely storing this plant (except the flower) for long-term storage, to eat later in the winter.
Pikas are unique residents of the alpine ecosystem. Members of the order Lagomorpha, they are closely related to rabbits and hares. Pikas are diurnal and do not hibernate. They store their food in small piles of "hay" under rocks in the rock slides and talus slopes that they live in. Common Name: American Pika Specific Name: Ochotona princeps August 7, 2010 - Clear Creek County - Summit Lake, Mount Evans Wilderness