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pika

[pahy-kuh] /ˈpaɪ kə/
noun
1.
any of several small, brown to gray tailless mammals of the genus Ochotona, resembling rabbits with short ears and legs and inhabiting western mountains of North America and parts of eastern Europe and Asia.
Origin
1820-1830
1820-30; recorded by the German naturalist P.S. Pallas (1741-1811) as the name for the animal in Evenki; compare Evenki (N Baikal dial.) pikačān a name for the tree creeper (Certhia familiaris), apparently based on Russian píkatʾ to squeak, peep (compare Russian pishchúkha a name for both the tree creeper and the pika, which emits a shrill sound)
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for pika
  • Unless you are an avid mountain hiker, you have probably never seen a pika.
  • Cony is a generic term used to describe many small rock-dwelling mammals including pika and hyrax.
  • Species found in this habitat include gray-crowned rosy finch, pika and golden mantled ground squirrel.
British Dictionary definitions for pika

pika

/ˈpaɪkə/
noun
1.
any burrowing lagomorph mammal of the family Ochotonidae of mountainous regions of North America and Asia, having short rounded ears, a rounded body, and rudimentary tail Also called cony
Word Origin
C19: from Tungusic piika
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for pika

rabbit-like animal of Siberia and North America, 1827, from Tunguse piika.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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