To help U.S. corn growers and consultants tackle growing insect resistance to Bt corn, university researchers have developed an online seminar series titled "Corn Rootworm Management in the Transgenic Era."
Since its commercialization in 2003, Bt corn has-and still is-proving to be an important technology for the control of insect pests, higher yield production, and higher quality grain. In recent years, however, the western corn rootworm's increasing resistance to Bt corn has caused some alarm.
To date, fall armyworms have not been a major crop pest in North Carolina, since they can’t survive a winter freeze. Studies have shown that these insects often migrate north from Florida, and this year they were found in North Carolina corn fields as early as May. The real fear is that these Bt-resistant armyworms will move from corn to cotton.
Over the past several years, farmers, academics, seed companies, and retailers have worked together to identify Best Management Practices (BMPs) to help manage corn rootworm, one of the most devastating pests for corn.
Fall armyworms and corn borers have long been a concern for Louisiana corn growers. While farmers in the U.S. have planted transgenic Bt corn varieties since the 1990s to biologically control pests, staying ahead of their ability to develop resistance is a constant battle.