A 3-yr investigation was conducted in commercial corn, Zea mays (L.), fields in eastern South Dakota to determine how reduced application rates of planting-time soil insecticides would influence temporal emergence patterns and survival of northern and western corn rootworms, Diabrotica barberi Smith and Lawrence, and D. virgifera virgifera LeConte, respectively. Beetle emergence was monitored at 2-d intervals throughout the entire adult emergence period of three growing seasons from corn plots treated with planting-time applications of labeled (1X) and reduced (0.5 and 0.75X) application rates of terbufos, tefluthrin, and chlorethoxyfos. No consistent insecticide- or rate-related impacts on mean total emergence per trap were recorded for any of the compounds investigated. However, terbufos applications resulted in a 52% reduction in the number of beetles captured per trap, 53% reduction in maximum rate of adult emergence, and a 59% reduction in overall rate of emergence over time for male D. virgifera during 1994. Terbufos also significantly extended the time required for emergence to peak and linear emergence of female D. virgifera to end in 1994. Tefluthrin applications delayed onset, end, and time of maximum emergence of female D. barberi by 9.9, 14.1, and 12 d, respectively, during 1993. Tefluthrin also reduced emergence rates over time for male (38%) and female (46%) D. barberi during 1994. Overall, application rate was inconsequential regarding total emergence, seasonal emergence pattern, or level of plant protection provided for all insecticides we tested in this 3-yr investigation. Our findings demonstrate that, if properly applied, the reduced application rates used in this study provide adequate root protection and will not significantly impact the biology of these pest species.