Public Lands

Unlike most Canadian provinces, the majority of the province's forest is privately owned.

While 88 per cent of Prince Edward Island is privately owned, the remaining 12 per cent is publicly-owned and managed by the government for the benefit of all Islanders.

The Forests, Fish and Wildlife Division manages four types of public land:

Can I use these areas?

Yes, unless the property is posted, these lands are open for non-consumptive uses such as photography, hiking, cycling and bird watching. You can also access these lands to go fishing and hunting.

Many public land properties have walking trails. You can find out more at Public Land Walking trails.

Can I cut trees on public lands?

No. All harvest activity on public lands must be done in accordance with the standards in the Ecosystem-based Forest Management Manual. Harvest opportunities are offered through public tenders, usually in the fall of the year.

For information on current tender opportunities, visit Public Land Forest Tenders :

Can I collect flowers, berries or other wild products on public land?

Collection of berries, wild edible plants or decorative plants for personal use is permitted. Collection of any plant material for commercial use or sale is not permitted unless awarded through public tender.

Can I use motorized vehicles on these properties?

The public land road system is open motorized vehicles but most roads are not maintained during the winter or spring months.
Snowmobiles are allowed to cross public lands but are restricted from areas where young trees are growing. ATVs, dirt bikes and other off-road vehicles are not permitted except in designated areas.

Can I trap on public lands?

Trapping is permitted on many public land properties but some properties are restricted due to their importance for other activities such as dog walking, hiking and snowshoeing. Restricted sites include, but are not limited to, the following areas:

  • New Harmony Demonstration woodlot
  • Auburn Demonstration woodlot
  • Valleyfield Demonstration woodlot
  • Camp Tamawaby Demonstration woodlot
  • Brookvale Demonstration woodlot
  • Boughton River Trail Natural Area
  • Murray River Pines Natural Area
  • Gairloch Road trails
  • A property within the Winter River Trail network
  • Royalty Oaks Natural Area
  • Beach Grove Natural Area
  • Bonshaw Hills Wilderness Park

For information on other restricted public land properties, contact your local forest district office

Where can I find maps that identify public lands?

The Public Land Atlas identifies all public lands, Federal and Provincial, on PEI. A hard copy of the Public Land Atlas is available at Forests, Fish and Wildlife Offices for $34 (HST Included) or you can access it free-of-charge on-line at:  Public Land Atlas On-Line

Published date: 
July 21, 2015
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General Inquiries

Forests, Fish and Wildlife Division
J. Frank Gaudet Tree Nursery
183 Upton Road
Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8

Phone: (902) 368-6450
Fax: (902) 368-4713

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khmayhew@gov.pe.ca