Up to 1869 the Survey produced high quality maps and reports, some 61 quarter sheets in all, which received high praise in international geological circles. In 1869, pleading lack of funds, the government abruptly terminated the Survey, against a background of disagreement with Selwyn about the functions of the Survey.
Victoria's loss was Australasia's gain, as the members of the Survey went to various colonies, continuing Selwyn's methods and high standards in the geological surveys that were established over the next few years.
Selwyn moved to Canada, becoming the second Director of its Geological Survey. In this position he was faced with an enormous challenge as Canada was in the process of expansion, taking in the region to the Pacific coast and to the Arctic. In addition to Geology he was later charged with dealing with Ethnology and collecting for an ever expanding Museum of Natural History.
As in Victoria Selwyn led by example, carrying out field work in remote and difficult terrain. He also again ensured the employment of talented young men, insisting that they had university training in geology, mining or related subjects. Selwyn insisted on accuracy and scientific probity, but occasionally gained enemies by his rather hasty temper especially during official activities. However he was generally respected and held in affection by close colleagues, as can be noted by the number of localities named after him. The Victorian Division of GSA now has a Selwyn Memorial Lecture, commemorating this important figure.