Robert N. Malek Profile picture
I mostly tweet about #insects, #agriculture and the natural world 🌍. PhD in agricultural #entomology. Pesticide Risk Reduction Expert @CABI_News 🇱🇧🇨🇭
Apr 13, 2022 9 tweets 5 min read
A few words on how this spray is generated and why the #beetle is not harmed in the process:

Hydroquinone and hydrogen peroxide are secreted by specialized glands and stored in a tank. Other glands produce catalyst enzymes such as catalases and peroxidases. 1/7 Image When the contents of the two glands are mixed, oxygen forms and in turn reacts with hydroquinone to convert it to benzoquinone. Pressure due to the buildup of oxygen then causes the hot mixture of water and benzoquinone to be expelled. 2/7 Image
Feb 28, 2021 8 tweets 6 min read
The fall armyworm (FAW), Spodoptera frugiperda is an invasive insect pest that is native to south America. It is spreading across the world and was recently reported in neighboring Syria. Why is this a big deal?
@Ibrakhim_Aya @MouhanedD @souhad_16 @TSerhal… Via natural flight and through the movement of infested goods, this pest has now spread to the US, to most African countries, to south east Asia and Australia, wreacking havoc along the way.
May 31, 2020 7 tweets 4 min read
When planning on starting your small garden, certain simple measures may turn out to be beneficial on the long run.
Let's go through some of them 👇

@Ibrakhim_Aya @MouhanedD @souhad_16 Design you soil beds in a way that permits an ease of access and maintenance. Whether you're using raised beds or direct soil cropping, keep in mind that you will have to walk through them for inspection, pruning, harvesting...
May 15, 2020 8 tweets 3 min read
We are supposed to preserve our natural biodiversity, especially that which concerns natural enemies of insects that are harmful to our crops, oak trees and pine groves.
But when an insect becomes a public nuisance and invades people's houses, dealing with it becomes tricky. Calosoma beetles feed on the pine processionary moth (دودة الصندل) and on the gypsy moth which causes severe defoliation of oak forests. In the early 1900s Calosoma beetles were mass released to control the above-mentioned pests in Minnesota and in other places.
Mar 19, 2020 10 tweets 3 min read
As Nadine pointed out, ToBRFV (Tomato brown rugose fruit virus) is indeed an emerging disease that threatens the Lebanese tomato cultivation, both greenhouse and field grown tomatoes. It has already been reported in neighboring countries such as Jordan, Turkey and Italy, all countries with which we have strong commercial links, especially with regard to agricultural products and produce (seeds, plants, fruits and vegetables...)