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I wonder if we need the word there in these questions:

How many people are (there) in your family?

How many apples are (there) in the fridge?

I think that there is like a subject because the answers of this type of question is There is/ are______. Is it true? Is it necessary to put there in the questions?

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Let's look at them without the "there":

How many people are in your family?

How many apples are in the fridge?

These are completely fine.

Technically, you would answer "How many are there?" with "There are X number of things", and you would answer "How many are?" (which is incomplete by the way, you need something like "in your family" or "in the fridge" with it) with "X number of things are...". So, if you just replace the question word with the answer word, you get:

How many people are there in your family?
There are six people in my family.

How many apples are in the fridge?
Six apples are in the fridge.

However, it is also completely fine to say "Six people are in family." and "There are six apples in the fridge." (The "there are..." version sounds better to me in most cases, although I would probably answer with just "Six.") Both questions are commonly used, and both answers are correct.

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