From the Super Mario Wiki
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Hop-Chops are uncommon enemies that first appear in Super Mario 3D World. They are sentient green springboards with a square head, red eyes, and sharp teeth. These enemies usually appear in groups of three or more, and reside in areas where a springboard is required for objects, like Green Stars.
When the players get near a group of Hop-Chops, they will begin to bounce towards them. Hop-Chops can be defeated by jumping on top of them, hitting them with projectiles, or swiping them with the Tanooki tail or Cat claws. Defeating a Hop-Chop sometimes turns it into a springboard which the player can carry and use, and is often used as a puzzle element in which the player has to figure out which Hop-Chop among the group will turn into a springboard upon defeat, rather than just falling apart into pieces. If a Hop-Chop does not break apart after being attacked, a sound will play signaling that the player has found the 'correct' one.
As springboards, Hop-Chops can be picked up, carried, and thrown. Much like Brolders, Hop-Chops that do not break upon being hit will come back to life if they are not attacked after a certain period of time. Also like Brolders, if a Hop-Chop turns back to normal while in a player's hands, that player will take damage before dropping them.