\ ˈflej \
fledged; fledging

Definition of fledge 

intransitive verb

of a young bird : to acquire the feathers necessary for flight or independent activity also : to leave the nest after acquiring such feathers

transitive verb

1 : to rear until ready for flight or independent activity

2 : to cover with or as if with feathers or down

3 : to furnish (something) with feathers feather an arrow

Examples of fledge in a Sentence

The young birds haven't yet fledged.

Recent Examples on the Web

Now that chicks have fledged, territories will be abandoned and attention will turn to fattening up for migration. Taylor Piephoff, charlotteobserver, "Bird activity slows this time of year, but it’ll pick up soon," 27 June 2018 So how did Durant change the Warriors, turning them from a burgeoning power into a full-fledged dynasty? Ron Kroichick, SFChronicle.com, "Warriors dynasty defined: Before KD, and after KD," 16 June 2018 If the public doesn’t step up quickly, the three elegant raptors that are about to fledge from their nest in UC Berkeley’s equally elegant bell tower could go through life as Fluffy, Cottonball and Marshmallow. Nanette Asimov, San Francisco Chronicle, "For baby raptors, cuddly names may not fly — UC seeks suggestions," 24 May 2018 The chicks will then rely on their parents for food for about two months before fledging, or first taking flight. Eugene Register-guard, OregonLive.com, "Webcam at UO offers bird's-eye view of osprey nest," 5 May 2018 Nature can be cruel with high mortality rates, but all seven of our eggs hatched and seven chicks fledged. Ernie Cowan, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Happily, but sadly too, the wrens fly from the nest," 26 May 2018 Fantasy firms have been preparing fully fledged betting products. The Economist, "The Supreme Court lets Americans lose money in a new way," 17 May 2018 As for the liquor license, he was forced to consider expanding into a full- fledged bar because of complaints about his karaoke to the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board, says Jerry Medina. Tom Kizzia, Anchorage Daily News, "Who killed Carlos Medina?," 25 Apr. 2018 Just one guy jamming Gronk off the snap, or full-fledged dedicated two-on-one coverage? Andy Benoit, SI.com, "Steelers D Vs. Bortles’ Legs, Vikings Must Be Sharp When Blitzing Brees, Tennessee Takes on Gronk, Philly’s Chance to Run on Atlanta," 12 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fledge.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of fledge

1566, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for fledge

fledge capable of flying, from Middle English flegge, from Old English -flycge; akin to Old High German flucki capable of flying, Old English flēogan to fly — more at fly

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Time Traveler for fledge

The first known use of fledge was in 1566

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English Language Learners Definition of fledge

of a bird : to develop the feathers necessary for flying

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Comments on fledge

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occurring twice a year or every two years

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