Discussion in 'English Only' started by belissimo, Mar 20, 2011.

  1. belissimo

    belissimo Senior Member

    Russia, Moscow
    I have a question about fishing. If I see a fisherman fishing, the usual question people ask "Biting?"(the fish is biting the bait). I want to know what is the usual way to ask this in English.
    Thanks a lot in advance
  2. germinal

    germinal Senior Member

    Bradford, England
    England English
    You can say 'Are they biting?' 'had any bites?' Usually you will get a shrug of the shoulders and a noncommittal grunt in reply though. :)
  3. George French Senior Member

    English - UK
    "Are they biting?" is used to enquire if the fish are nibbling at the bait. Hopefully they bite and they get caught on the hook. That's fine unless you are the fish.:eek:


    It is also used figuratively...
  4. Matching Mole

    Matching Mole Senior Member

    England, English
    We do talk of fish biting (or not) meaning to take bait from a fishing line, so this would be understood. There's also a figurative phrase "I'll bite", meaning I'll answer the question (the question—a difficult one—being the "bait", and the answerer the fish, as it were).
  5. cyberpedant

    cyberpedant Senior Member

    North Adams, MA
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    Just as a matter of clarification, "Are they biting?" usually refers to the general state of things, more or less "Is the fishing productive today?" It does not normally mean "Are there fish biting at your line right now?"
  6. belissimo

    belissimo Senior Member

    Russia, Moscow
    Thanks a lot.

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