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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce perch (audio)

Dictionary definition of perch

To rest or settle on a high or narrow surface, often with the use of a support such as a branch, ledge, or perch itself.
"The hiker found a comfortable rock to perch on and rest for a while."

Detailed meaning of perch

It involves finding a temporary or stable position above the ground, typically for birds or other creatures capable of perching. When an animal perches, it assumes a stationary or balanced posture, maintaining a position where it can observe its surroundings or take a momentary break. Perching is a common behavior observed in birds, where they alight on tree branches, power lines, or other elevated structures. It allows them to conserve energy, seek safety, engage in social interactions, or scan for potential prey or mates. The verb 'perch' can also be used figuratively to describe humans or objects that are placed or positioned on a high or elevated surface, often for the purpose of display or convenience. In this sense, 'perch' implies a temporary or precarious position, offering a vantage point or a strategic location for observation or engagement.

Example sentences containing perch

1. The bird flew down to perch on the tree branch.
2. The cat tried to perch on the narrow ledge, but slipped and fell.
3. He carefully balanced on one foot to perch on the edge of the stool.
4. The butterfly fluttered by to perch briefly on the flower.
5. She climbed up the ladder to perch on top of the roof and enjoy the view.
6. The squirrel scurried up the tree to perch on a high branch.

History and etymology of perch

The verb 'perch' has an etymology rooted in Old English and Old French. It can be traced back to the Old English word 'percan,' which means 'to pierce' or 'to thrust through,' and it was initially used in the context of piercing or spearing fish. In Old French, 'percher' meant 'to place' or 'to set up,' often in the sense of placing birds on a high, narrow surface like a perch. Over time, these two influences merged, and the verb 'perch' in English came to describe the action of resting or settling on a high or narrow surface, often with the support of a branch, ledge, or even a perch specifically designed for birds. The etymology of 'perch' reflects the historical connection between fishing and birdkeeping, which contributed to the development of this versatile word, used to describe both avian behavior and the act of settling in elevated positions.

Quiz: Find the meaning of perch

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Further usage examples of perch

1. He held his camera steady to capture the bird as it landed to perch.
2. The dragonfly hovered in the air before choosing a leaf to perch on.
3. She carefully maneuvered her bicycle to perch against the wall.
4. The seagulls gathered along the railing to perch and observe the beachgoers.
5. He found a cozy spot to perch on the park bench and read his book.
6. The monkey swung from branch to branch, searching for the perfect spot to perch.
7. The dragon perched on the castle tower, surveying its kingdom.
8. The caterpillar crawled up the stem to perch on the topmost leaf.
9. The owl swooped down from the sky to perch on the rooftop.
10. She stepped onto the balcony to perch on the railing and enjoy the sunset.
11. The falcon dived down to catch its prey and perch on a nearby tree.
12. The ladybug crawled up the stem of the flower to perch among the petals.
13. He found a sturdy tree stump to perch on and take a break from hiking.
14. The bird decided to perch on the tree branch.
15. She watched the city lights from her perch on the rooftop.
16. The cat loves to perch on the windowsill and watch birds.
17. The butterfly gently perched on a delicate flower.
18. He found a comfortable spot to perch and read his book.
19. The owl would often perch high in the old oak tree.
20. The squirrel would perch on the fence while eating.
21. The mountain goat managed to perch on a narrow ledge.
22. The dragonfly would perch briefly before darting away.
23. The eagle circled overhead before perching on a cliff.
24. The crow would perch on the power lines in the morning.
25. She let her thoughts wander as she perched by the river.
26. The falcon perched on a telephone pole, scanning for prey.
27. He used a small stool to help him perch on the barstool.
28. The cat tried to perch on the narrow ledge but slipped.
29. The small boat perched on the edge of the tranquil lake.
30. The birdwatcher patiently waited for birds to perch nearby.
31. The parrot would perch on his shoulder while he worked.
32. The monkeys liked to perch in the treetops to stay safe.
33. She managed to perch on the edge of the crowded subway seat.



roost, descend, settle, ground


ACT 12 (American College Testing), High School 1, Wildlife and Environment

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