Main definitions of perch in English

: perch1perch2perch3

perch1

noun

  • 1An object on which a bird alights or roosts, typically a branch or horizontal bar.

    ‘the budgerigar shuffled along its perch’
    • ‘It is simply inhumane to chain a bird to a perch or stand.’
    • ‘They nest in the open and choose high, exposed perches.’
    • ‘They stood together in the long corridors and windy balconies; they watched the sunset and the flocks of birds that seemed to be searching for perches from the large windows of her upstairs room.’
    • ‘They sing from high perches in isolated trees.’
    • ‘The frame-houses, on the other hand, seem to have alighted like passing birds on unlikely perches.’
    • ‘Naturalists say that mere presence of perches will not attract birds.’
    • ‘He watches the child climb the low branches of an apple tree, sees the insects inside the fruit and watches the bird perch upon the topmost cluster of leaves.’
    • ‘These mites originate from other pet birds, and are easily eradicated by washing or changing perches, feeder cups and toys frequently, and keeping the cage clean and washed.’
    • ‘Birds sang from perches on the rooftops, and shutters were thrown open to let in the morning sun, as the city people began their day.’
    • ‘Most of the perches were exposed horizontal stems or branches about 1 cm in diameter.’
    • ‘Her dark laughter sent shivers down my spine, and the birds flew away from their perches, rightfully frightened by her voice.’
    • ‘Birds were tested on perches appropriate for their foot size.’
    • ‘There were thousands of them leaving their daylight perches and flying away to forage on neighbouring islands.’
    • ‘Dead branches also make perfect perches for resting birds and are good places to hang feeders.’
    • ‘Birds sang their morning songs from the high perches in the old trees that lumbered over the near distant lands.’
    • ‘Others relish their greens when hung creatively over branches and perches so they may work at nibbling the tasty offering.’
    • ‘A realistically painted bird perches on a feeder against a chalky wall.’
    • ‘Keep in mind that having a selection of wooden toys and proper perches can help to keep your bird's beak trimmed naturally, thus eliminating the need for you to have it done.’
    • ‘The moon becomes moon again and the bird returns to its perch.’
    • ‘Birds abandoned their perches and took to the skies.’
    pole, rod, branch, roost, rest, resting place
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A place where someone or something rests or sits, especially one that is high or precarious.
      ‘Marian looked down from her perch in a beech tree above the road’
      • ‘They stared out the big picture window from their perch on the couch.’
      • ‘She half raises an eyebrow from her perch on the kitchen couch.’
      • ‘In the distance small hamlets teetered on mountain ridges, seemingly ready to tumble off their precarious perch.’
      • ‘No one's perch overlooks anyone else's - even in the less expensive rooms and lodgings.’
      • ‘Jennifer sighed dreamily from her perch on the windowsill, her green dress gathered carelessly at her knees.’
      • ‘Though it was clearly meant to provide a comfortable viewing perch, the design fell somewhat short.’
      • ‘Rescue crews plucked thousands of people from trees and rooftops yesterday, but thousands more were left behind, forced to survive yet another night on precarious perches above still rising flood water.’
      • ‘She was sitting in on this session and got down from her perch on the windowsill.’
      • ‘If prolonged crouching becomes arduous, a portable stool provides a reasonably comfortable perch amid the stubble.’
      • ‘He looked up from his book, observing them from his safe perch in the corner.’
      • ‘It's on one of the most dramatic stretches of coastline in the country, and rugged perches with ocean views and road frontage will only become more of a rarity with the tightening of planning regulations in areas of scenic beauty.’
      • ‘Meanwhile, she rested on a perch, mildly disgusted by all the commotion.’
      • ‘The other stocking waves shyly from its precarious perch atop a tilted lampshade.’
      • ‘Her perch on the edge of the bed had not been achieved easily.’
      • ‘In the sudden cold and darkness, their rooftop perch seemed precarious.’
      • ‘All three of them peered from their perch in the tree down the road.’
      • ‘The four throne chairs sat on a perch overlooking the broad room.’
      • ‘Finally, she says human rights lawyers must come down from their lofty perches.’
      • ‘Finally, we found a perch, and the MC came out, and announced the first round.’
      • ‘The panorama from his lofty perch, he assures me, is quite spectacular.’

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • 1 (of a bird) alight or rest on something.

    ‘a herring gull perched on the rails’
    • ‘A gorgeous golden eagle was perched on the sill.’
    • ‘Similarly, parents might lure young from the nest by perching nearby with food or by calling to nestlings.’
    • ‘A pair of birds fly down and perch on the tombstone.’
    • ‘He puts food into the hands of a child and holds them steady so the birds will perch on his fingers and eat.’
    • ‘The vultures were all perched upon tree roots, all looking hungrily at the same place.’
    • ‘Thus an identical wing posture is maintained by two very different mechanisms: a wing elevator counters gravity when the bird is perching whereas a wing depressor counters lift when it's gliding.’
    • ‘She looked up to see a large, colorful bird perched on the rail, watching her curiously.’
    • ‘Scarlet macaws, blue and gold macaws, and hosts of smaller birds perch together in their hundreds to excavate the best clay layer along a riverbank.’
    • ‘A marbled murrelet perches on a branch 50 feet below her.’
    • ‘Between visits, the hummingbirds commonly remained perched nearby.’
    • ‘Over the weekend, the birds will perch on trees all around the neighborhood and wait for the cacophony to die down.’
    • ‘She was tempted to start singing to herself, with the birds perched in the trees around her.’
    • ‘There was a black crow perched comfortably on his shoulder.’
    • ‘Looking out she had seen a giant vulture perched on the flagpole.’
    • ‘I saw a single coot and lots of wood pigeons perched in the dead trees surrounding the lagoon.’
    • ‘The bird perching on his photo gear is an echo parakeet, a species he'd come to research.’
    • ‘Spent birds perch limply in trees or at the vendor's feet.’
    • ‘He was awakened by the chirping of birds and found four starlings perched outside his window.’
    • ‘The bright bird perched on her shoulders, his eyes shut.’
    • ‘Sunlight streams over fields, birds perch in trees, rows of bright crops glisten on the hills.’
    roost, sit, rest
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1(of a person) sit on something high or narrow.
      ‘Eve perched on the side of the armchair’
      • ‘Her design provides a steeply raked underlit playing area upon which the actors perch precariously.’
      • ‘Sure enough, he could see his young fighter perched on the balls of his feet on top of the railing.’
      • ‘Another family drove past, the children perched on top of a couple of mattresses strapped over another sorry pile of possessions.’
      • ‘Was he not perched in an exalted seat at the Democratic convention?’
      • ‘As it backs up near one of the houses, a chatter of excitement erupts from the people perched precariously on top of its cargo.’
      • ‘I sat alone, perched happily on a ledge, bordered on three sides by thin air.’
      • ‘The hot afternoon sun blazed down upon him, as he stood perched on top of a wooden pedestal like a bird.’
      • ‘These days truck drivers have the audacity to drive through a town or city with passengers perching on the cargo even when they are aware it is illegal.’
      • ‘He turned to glance at the small figure perched next to him on the wagon seat and looked into the serious eyes of his young son.’
      • ‘She was still perched primly in her chair.’
      • ‘We spotted an old man precariously perched on top of a pile of rubble, searching for something.’
      • ‘The site seems small until you see one of the workers perched on the top of the skeleton, dwarfed by the size of the structure.’
      • ‘He sees a good looking, smartly dressed woman perched on a bar stool.’
      • ‘She sat, perched delicately on a stool at the bar that was right down the street from her dorm.’
      • ‘He climbs into it and perches happily on the branches.’
      • ‘A few moments later she was perched comfortably atop Jake's desk.’
      • ‘These airbags are very lifelike in their resemblance to small children perched on the front seat of driven motorcycles.’
      • ‘Even builders perched on scaffolding don't do it anymore.’
      • ‘Farther into the alley, there was a pile of crates with a boy perched on top.’
      • ‘She sighs, too, and perches on the edge of my bed.’
    2. 1.2(of a building) be situated above or on the edge of something.
      ‘the fortress is perched on a crag in the mountains’
      • ‘Our first stop is the legendary Banff Springs, rising from the side of the mountain, perched above the town.’
      • ‘The castle itself, built in 1046, is a brooding structure perched on the hill above the River Mulde in Saxony.’
      • ‘It's a deeply felt issue, as we have so little forest, perched on the geographic edge of the Indian Ocean, surrounded by desert.’
      • ‘In any case the players have their their own chef to cater for their culinary needs in a luxury hotel perched on a cliff above South Korea's East Sea.’
      • ‘Although perched on the edge of the Pacific Ocean and exposed to the elements, Pebble Beach is not a true links course.’
      • ‘The visit to the establishment, perched above the Museum of Scotland, had begun pleasantly enough.’
      • ‘On the banks surrounding the ponds a flock of sheep is grazing, and perched over the edge of each of the ponds are a number of brightly painted huts.’
      • ‘He lives in Vienna, his home a modernist oasis of tranquillity perched above the lush greenery of the Wienerwald.’
      • ‘He raised his head, sunglasses perched above his headband in deference to the dim lighting in the dressing rooms.’
      • ‘Derby is a small town perched on the red edge of the vast Kimberley region in the north of Western Australia.’
      • ‘One of the grandest old lodgings is the Jamaican Inn perched on a cliff above a secluded slice of beach.’
      • ‘Iatmul villages become a cluster of houses perched on stilts situated within a body of muddy water.’
      • ‘The tiny cape perched on the edge of a hill was neglected and dark so much of the time, few people ever knew it was occupied.’
      • ‘However, I found the simple way it was served, as a steak perched above vegetables, slightly disappointing.’
      • ‘Whisper glided across the dark bay, having spied in the distance a tall building perched on the edge of a cliff.’
      • ‘We ended up booking a beautiful one with a pool, perched up on the edge of a hillside olive grove overlooking the blue waters of Navarino Bay and the beaches of Pylos.’
      • ‘Throughout the conversation, the manager's eyes dart to the mobile perched on the edge of his desk, willing it to ring.’
      • ‘She leads me along a row of bamboo restaurants perched high above the mangroves.’
      • ‘As every self-respecting Yorkshireman knows, this is the highest inn in England, perched at 1,732 above sea level.’
      • ‘It is named after a granite boulder perched above the rocks.’
    3. 1.3[with object]Set or balance someone or something on.
      ‘Peter perched a pair of gold-rimmed spectacles on his nose’
      • ‘When my bedroom was empty except for the waterbed, the lamp, and the stereo, I perched a note on the coffee table in front of the TV.’
      • ‘She sat on the other end of the bench seat and perched her feet on the edge of the seat in front of her.’
      • ‘Their little bar-stool table was about the size of a postage stamp and they were struggling to share an entrée, perching the plates on their laps, couch-potato style, and totally at odds with the eloquence of the rest of the restaurant.’
      • ‘It perches its tender comedy on a choice between the maturity that masks a meek acceptance of death, and a spirit that refuses to yield.’
      • ‘He wisely perches his sleeping bag on top of a dune to avoid their onslaught.’
      • ‘She sat back, crossed her legs and perched the box on her lap.’
      • ‘Smiling slowly, he perched his elbows on the table and dropped his chin into his hands.’
      • ‘She let out a soft sigh and perched an elbow on her desk, resting her head against her hand.’
      • ‘If somebody ignores the signs, it's a cue for tellers to perch their pinkies on the silent-alarm buttons.’
      • ‘We stuff most of our luggage into the hatchback's boot and perch a suitcase on its side on the back seat, leaving just enough room for a passenger or - at a stretch - two.’
      • ‘Brenna climbed up on the chair beside her, perched her chin on her elbows and watched her intently.’
      • ‘She perched her head on her hand and slumped.’
      • ‘She took a step forwards, perching her hands on her hips.’
      • ‘That said, the advisability of perching a laurel crown on a horse-riding hat, which tended to happen after the equestrianism events, may have to be addressed.’
      • ‘She perched her face on the edge of her mattress in an attempt to wriggle back into the sheets.’
      • ‘He took the seat, delicately perching himself on the rather precarious space.’
      • ‘He swept his long hair back from his face with his hand, perching his foot on the raised edge of the flat roof and resting his elbow casually on his knee as the noon sun beat down upon them both.’
      • ‘So, we took it off the breezeblocks it was perched on and carried them around separately, stacking them up again in the new place, then returned for the tank.’
      • ‘Place the leg in the pot (roasting dish) and perch the rosemary on top.’

Phrases

  • knock someone off their perch

    • informal Cause someone to lose a position of superiority or pre-eminence.

      ‘will this knock London off its perch as Europe's leading financial centre?’
      • ‘They are still the deepest team in the East, and knocking them off their perch won't be easy.’
      • ‘The high-flying Tykes had run up a record seven successive victories in the tournament before Durham knocked them off their perch last year.’
      • ‘But first things first and we will go out with every intention of trying to knock them off their perch.’
      • ‘But, he knows that it will may take something special to knock them off their perch.’
      • ‘The inspectors are irritated because it knocked them off their perch, undermining their authority and purpose on the world stage.’
      • ‘We'll be trying to knock them off their perch next year, but then again, that's what it's all about!’
      • ‘Can anyone really see a midfield knocking them off their perch?’
      • ‘They believe they can knock Australia off their perch and become the dominant team in world one-day cricket, the coach said here in New Zealand yesterday.’
      • ‘There is no point in being over ambitious and aiming for to knock Kerry off their perch.’
      • ‘Alex didn't knock them off their perch, he has buried them!’

Origin

Late Middle English: the noun from perch; the verb from Old French percher.

Pronunciation:

perch

/pəːtʃ/

Main definitions of perch in English

: perch1perch2perch3

perch2

noun

  • 1An edible freshwater fish with a high spiny dorsal fin, dark vertical bars on the body, and orange lower fins.

    bass
    • ‘The research may improve the culture of additional tasty fish species like yellow perch and walleye.’
    • ‘Within a few hours, they can leave the base and find themselves on a frozen lake inside a cozy heated hut fishing for feisty northern pike or tasty yellow perch.’
    • ‘Out back of the house, oak, hemlock and cedar trees crown a path toward a 30-acre lake stocked with largemouth bass, yellow perch, pumpkinseed sunfish, and more.’
    • ‘Fish species most commonly consumed included bass, yellow perch, and walleye.’
    • ‘The zander has the rough feel and spiked dorsal fins of the perch, protecting small fish from predation, particularly from pike and herons.’
    1. 1.1Used in names of other freshwater and marine fishes resembling or related to the perch, e.g. climbing perch, pikeperch, sea perch, surfperch.

Origin

Late Middle English: from Old French perche, via Latin from Greek perkē.

Pronunciation:

perch

/pəːtʃ/

Main definitions of perch in English

: perch1perch2perch3

perch3

noun

British
historical
  • 1A measure of length, especially for land, equal to a quarter of a chain or 51/2 yards (approximately 5.029 m).

    Also called pole, rod
    • ‘High street contains about seventy houses, is 90 feet in width, and 180 perches in length.’
    • ‘This strange measure undoubtedly is related to other archaisms such as the furlong, the perch and the fathom.’
    • ‘He begins his analysis by simplifying and generalizing the problem, dispensing with the surveyor's vocabulary of perches and chains and bearings.’
  • 2A measure of area, especially for land, equal to 160th of an acre or 301/4 square yards (approximately 25.29 sq. metres).

    Also called pole, rod, square pole, omitted unresolving XREF to "square rod"
    • ‘It is described in Griffith's Valuation of 1857 as containing one acre two roods and five perches and owned by him.’
    • ‘It was part of an area of 15 acres, three roods and four perches originally granted to him.’
    • ‘In 1914, 1 acre was taken for a pumice quarry, and subsequently 3 roods, or 27.8 perches, were returned to the descendants of those owners.’

Origin

Middle English (in the general sense ‘pole, stick’): from Old French perche, from Latin pertica measuring rod, pole.

Pronunciation:

perch

/pəːtʃ/