Location, Wyoming, USA, Absaroka Mountains
This little pika, savoring a bit of grass in its mouth, meandered over to my position and stopped just a few inches short of the minimum-focusing-distance of my lens. Then, jumped up onto the rock, faced the sun, and seemed to become quite contemplative while watching the sunset. In any event, my new little friend and most cooperative subject granted me the time to work the combination of shutter speed, depth-of-field, and lens performance I was hoping for…please click on the image to view large and enjoy the fun.
Easily seen during daylight hours sitting on rocks, surveying surrounding territory. Male and female territories are usually adjacent, and separate except during breeding season. Short vocalizations signal movements to and from territories, and are used as alarm calls as well. Longer calls are used by the males during the breeding season. Maximum longevity is about 6 years. Use talus slopes or areas of broken rocks near meadows.
Habitat: Alpine & subalpine habitats, Canyons & caves
Range: Rocky Mountains, Southwest, California, Northwest, Western Canada
Information Source: eNature.com