Pikas survival strategy: eat feces instead of hibernation

Some animals move away, others devour their fat stores or go into hibernation. But the small mammals that inspired Pokemon Pikachu (from the English term “Pika”) brave winters on the cold, dry Tibetan Plateau at more than 4,500 metres, even without such strategies. Discover a task force headed by John R. Speakman of the Chinese Academy of Sciences How does a black-lipped pika weigh a maximum of 350 grams (Ochotona curzoniae) Survive in extreme conditions. The team also writes in PNAS magazine., they follow a two-pronged strategy: on the one hand, they dramatically reduce their metabolism – and on the other hand, they eat the feces of the yak lying around.

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