From my crop scout:
A recent observation by my field scouts requires some comment. They have been finding in some select corn fields a fair number of Sap beetles (A.K.A picnic beetles) borrowing their way under the husks and feeding on the end kernels of the ear. In some areas in some fields as much as 20 percent of the ears have been found to be so infested. While sap beetle damage is not uncommon, the level of infestation in some of these fields is a matter of concern. Although the actual damage they are doing to the ear and kernels is not insignificant, of greater concern are ear and kernel diseases that the feeding may initiate.After a few of these all I hear is "Danger! Danger, Will Robinson!"
At this point it is unclear if the infested fields were treated with a fungicide, which may have inhibited pathogenic agents which typically limit sap beetles populations, or if there is another reason for their increased activity (cool weather, lack of predators, etc). University recommendations state that control of sap beetles with an insecticide is typically only economical with seed corn.
While I understand that this information is coming to you rather late, there may be some justification for adding an insecticide to fungicide applications that are yet pending. Please call me if you have concerns.
And now I have passed the anxiety along. A burden shared...