Dates are central to the traditions observed by Muslims during the holy month of Ramadan. But date farmers in Tunisia are now bracing themselves for an infestation.
According to FAO, a hungry red beetle is threatening the country’s famed date palm plantations. The creature bores holes in the tree trunks, laying eggs in the tissues of the plant. The worm then burrows deep into the trunk and soon the leaves turn brown.
A recent FAO report has identified the Red Palm Weevil as one of the world's worst invasive pests, which feeds on around forty palm species across the world.