(Grand Forks, B.C.)
The simple ethics of wildcrafting are to keep the environment around you in mind at all times. Don't simply rape and pillage. Use a delicate touch, and a light hand on the land when collecting the produce of the land.
There are rules to be followed while wildcrafting, as with all things.
The natural rules that you must obey are simple - never take more than you can use. If there are only a few of the herbs, mushrooms or other wild things, you may choose not to take any. Seeds of certain plants seem to be produced in abundance, but again, only take a few.
Seeds and many plant parts are required by birds and other animals to see them through the winter, so even if there seems to be plenty, think ahead. If there is any chance that you will be depriving other creatures of their livelihood, it's better to leave more behind.
Mushrooms and fiddleheads are very seasonal, and only produced in a very short window of time. If you can get in and get out with little disturbance of the land, other plants and the creatures that live in the vicinity, that's the best case scenario.
Wildcrafting ethics mean that there will be an abundance of nature's bounty for all. Please don't be thoughtless.
See the page on Wildcrafting Ethics by Howie Brounstein for a list of commonsense rules to collect by.
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