Submitted to: Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/26/2003
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: The registration of transgenic corn with resistance to corn rootworm larval feeding offers a viable alternative to insecticides for managing the most economically important insect pests of corn. Maintaining insect susceptibility to transgenic crops (resistance management) is in the interest of growers, the Environmental Protection Agency, and industry, but requires an understanding of corn rootworm biology that does not currently exist. In recent years, we have conducted a series of experiments on the basic biology of the western corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera LeConte (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) with an eye toward resistance management. We have documented that larvae can significantly move at least three plants down the row and across narrow-row corn, that larvae can survive for at least 24 days on most grasses tested, and we have collected data on the effects of Monsanto's recently registered product, YieldGard® Rootworm, on larval movement that implied that this product is not a preferred feeding site when alternatives were available. More recently, we have demonstrated that western corn rootworm larvae will move from alternate hosts to YieldGard® Rootworm corn when alternate hosts are killed with herbicide. These data will be reviewed and discussed in terms of resistance management with the currently registered product and other potentially higher-dosed products. This information will be important to seed companies, the Environmental Protection Agency, and modelers in their attempts to develop resistance management plans for transgenic corn by providing more realistic assumptions in current mathematical models.