Recently, there has been interest in using conventional corn hybrids (non-GMO) to cut input costs because of low commodity prices. However, using conventional corn can also be considered part of an overall IPM plan that diversifies management tactics to increase profitability and avoid resistance.
Using corn hybrids without below ground traits can fit into an IPM program because beetle monitoring is completed prior to making seed purchases. However, you are substituting the convenience of prophylactic treatments (traited corn) for increased labor costs (field scouting). Also, in the absence of below ground traits, at-plant, preventive treatments are available for corn rootworm which are efficacious and have had a history of successful use. Furthermore, field scouting will provide the added value of supportive information that you can use to select field specific management practices that can be used to diversify corn rootworm treatment. Thereby reducing the reliance on a single tactic and delay resistance to Bt hybrids.
Conversely, using corn hybrids with above ground traits does not fit into an IPM approach. Seed purchases are made well in advance of the time period you should scout to determine if control is needed. Fortunately, the insects which are targeted by the above ground Bt traits have scouting procedures, economic thresholds and rescue treatment available if you forgo hybrids with the above-ground traits.