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  1. emka's Avatar
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    #1

    Mushroom hunting

    It’s autumn and mushroom season. I had an interesting discussion with somebody yesterday about this activity, or rather about the correct English expression for it.

    We (= German expression) “collect” or “gather” mushrooms because mushrooms are firmly rooted in the soil and patiently wait to be found and picked. The English native speaker said that in English you go mushroom “hunting”, which I found very amusing because it implies that there is a moving target (cf. pig hunting, deer hunting, i.e. the target normally running away from the hunter).

    Is mushroom hunting widely used, or was this just a local American expression? And is my concept of hunting (pursuing a moving living object) wrong?

    I realise that hunting is also used figuratively, e.g. job hunting, house hunting (target not moving), but that’s different because it’s not a living thing and you don’t actually bag a physical object.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Mushroom hunting

    I think it's used because "hunting" can mean "searching for".

    I've hunted everywhere in the house but I can't find my favourite belt.
    He hunted high and low for the perfect suit for his wedding but he's going to end up wearing jeans and a T-shirt.
    I'm going to hunt for the last few raspberries of the year so I can make a fruit crumble.

    With mushrooms, there is also the added danger that some mushrooms are very dangerous so you "hunt" for the safe ones, and avoid the poisonous ones.

    Here in the south of England, I often see posters advertising "A Fungi Forage" - that sounds much more fun than "Mushroom Hunt"!

  3. emka's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Mushroom hunting

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    I think it's used because "hunting" can mean "searching for".
    (...)
    Here in the south of England, I often see posters advertising "A Fungi Forage" - that sounds much more fun than "Mushroom Hunt"!
    I see. The "searching for" explanation makes sense, especially given your examples.
    And sure, Fungi Forage sounds much more fun because it alliterates, so it's even nicer than "foraging for mushrooms". It's even fun for the ear, not just the palate.
    But I'd better stop because I'll soon start salivating for a yummy mushroom omelette...

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    #4

    Re: Mushroom hunting

    People use pigs and dogs to find truffles, which sounds close to hunting- the target doesn't move, but the animal searching for them does. And I presume they have to run and pull the animal away before they eat them.

    • Member Info
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    #5

    Re: Mushroom hunting

    Foraging is a fashionable term at the moment in the UK, possibly on the back of restaurants like Noma.

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