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Seed Collectors Code of Ethics

Collecting seeds (or plants) from natural areas is a prohibited activity on city property and should only be conducted when supervised by a City of Mississauga employee or where special permission has been given.


By signing below, you agree to abide by the provisions set out in this Code of Ethics for the duration of your involvement in the program. 


Code of Ethics


  • Avoid creating any unnecessary disturbance to the natural area.

    • Stay on marked paths where possible. 

      • Carry your letter of permit when walking off-trail on city property 

    • Do not trample vegetation underfoot. 


  • Only collect seed from native species that can be accurately identified 


  • Do not collect seeds from Species at Risk. 


  • Only collect seed from viable populations.

    • Viable populations include: 

      • Large patches or concentrations of the species

      • Species that are dispersed throughout a larger natural area but when taken together have a large population size. 

      • Populations that are free of noticeable disease, infection and insect damage. 

      • Populations that have not been set aside for conservation, protection or other management. 


  • At most, no more than approximately 10% of the seed should be collected. 

    • For example:

      • One seed in every ten is collected from any given plant, or

      • Multiple seeds are collected from every tenth plant that is encountered. 


  • Avoid over-collection. Seed left on the plant will contribute to the natural regeneration of the species and provide valuable resources for wildlife. 

    • Remember to consider the effects of your collection over time. If only some fruit/seed are ripe at the first visit of a season, avoid collecting from this plant in the future as new berries ripen. 


  • Keep records. Label the seed collection bags with the date, location, species and any other notes related to the population or habitat. 


  • Report findings of seed forecasting and collection activities on city property to the City of Mississauga as appropriate. 

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