The oviposition, larval arrest and establishment by the stem borer Chilo partellus (Swinhoe) were measured on different maize genotypes during anthesis. The maize genotypes tested were: Inbred A (Susceptible), Mp 704, MBR-8637, MBR-8650, MBR-8668, Poza Rica 7832, ER-29 SVR, Katumani Composite B, MMV 400, Bulk CG 4141, and ICZ2-CM. The moths oviposited on the middle leaves of the plant and the neonate larvae moved to leaf sheaths and ear husks to feed (arrest). As they grew older, the larvae invaded the stem, ear shanks and tassel to complete feeding (establishment) and to pupate. The response of the stem borer differed with resistant and susceptible maize genotypes at anthesis. More eggs were laid and larval arrest was higher on the susceptible than on resistant genotypes. Genotypes also differed in the resistance of feeding sites to larval establishment; the genotype Poza Rica 7832 showed resistance to larval establishment in the stems and ears, but the shank was heavily infested. By contrast, MBR 8637 showed greater resistance to larval establishment in the shank than the other genotypes. These resistance sources could be utilized effectively in a maize breeding programme to develop varieties with moderate to high levels of resistance at all potential feeding sites.