Last updated at 13:16 BST, Thursday, 13 September 2012

Up for grabs

A herring gull plucks a puffin from the ground.

A herring gull plucks a puffin from the ground. Photo: Amanda Hayes/BWPA/PA Wire

Today's Phrase

If something is 'up for grabs', it is available.

For example:

Is this last biscuit up for grabs? I'm starving.

There are some great prizes up for grabs in tonight's pub quiz.

There are three scholarships up for grabs. I'm definitely going to apply.


Don't confuse it with

The expression 'up for grabs' is always plural, even when we're talking about a single thing.

For example:

Incorrect: There is still one prize up for grab.

Correct: There is still one prize up for grabs.

Interesting fact

The photo above won the 'animal behaviour' category in the 2012 British Wildlife Photography competition. Amanda Hayes took this picture in Northumberland, in north east England. The photographer spent a week trying to photograph gulls stealing the sand eels from puffins. Luckily for the puffin, it managed to free itself from the gull's grasp.

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