by Peter Kenter Correspondent (for Daily Commercial News)
SUSAN COLLINS Dowsing is the art of finding water with the human body alone or with the use of simple tools. Susan Collins has helped companies find old wells and determine drill sites.
You won’t find Artesian Dowsing of Gananoque, Ontario on the list of subcontractors for major construction companies, but Lloyd Nuttall says his company is kept busy on an on-call basis, locating underground water sources for construction companies, engineers and well diggers across the province.
Dowsing is the art of finding water with the human body alone, although some dowsers use simple tools such as a forked stick or a coat hanger bent into the shape of an “L” as an antenna to assist them.
“The earth is a molten core of iron and it creates a magnetic field,” says Nuttall, who is vice-president of The Canadian Society of Dowsers. “Some people are more sensitive to anomalies in that field than others and from that comes the ability to find underground water, for example.”
Nuttall comes from a family of dowsers — his father and grandfather had developed the skill as well, he says.
“I will tell you the depth of the water, its volume, hardness and the quality of the water to within a five per cent tolerance or refund the fee,” says Nuttall. “I haven’t had to do that in 40 years.”
Nuttall says he zeroes in on the information required by simply formulating questions and observing the reactions of the dowsing rod or coat hanger when he considers those questions.
Recent contracts include finding a septic bed, locating a broad range of water sources for wells, and assisting a citizens’ group in analyzing groundwater quality near the city of Napanee’s Richmond Landfill.
“Often, people have the choice of hiring a hydrological engineer and using ground-penetrating radar to find water sources, or give me a chance, so they choose me,” says Nuttall. “For many people, using a technological device is perceived as value. Even when I succeed where others have failed, a lot of clients are still quiet about it.”
The skill is easy to learn, he says, but it takes time to become sensitive to subtle frequencies. “It’s fairly easy to learn to ride a bicycle,” he says. “But that doesn’t automatically qualify you for the Tour de France.”
Nuttall teaches others how to dowse, including construction contractors who want to learn. He recently held a training session for heating, plumbing and electrical contractor Merl Aldwire of Gananoque, teaching personnel to dowse for electrical lines, and locating them inside walls without exploratory drilling.
The society’s past president, Susan Collins operates a practice based in Ontario’s King Township. She’s also a member of the Ontario Ground Water Association, helping to represent the ancient art professionally.
“I not only tell you where to drill for water, but for water that meets Reg. 903 under the Ontario Water Resources Act,” she says.
Collins says she walks around an area until she gets the right feeling for water, then uses dowsing tools to amplify the sensation.
“A slight twitch in my muscles transfers energy to the dowsing rods, and that’s what makes them move,” she says. “The rods simply amplify what the body already knows, helping to differentiate the depth or volume of the water, or whether it’s fresh or salty.”
However, Collins will refuse to work on any project that may have a negative impact on the environment, depleting groundwater below a renewable level, for example. “The project has to result in the greatest good for everyone,” she says.
Among her clients, commercial greenhouses looking for water sources, commercial agriculture clients in the Holland Marsh, rural machine shops, golf courses and well drillers. A repeat client is King City Well Drilling of King City, Ontario.
“Susan is about the best dowser we’ve used,” says company owner Bruce O’Brien. “Somebody found her online and we tried to throw a couple of curve balls at her regarding the locations of some old wells, and drilling depths, but the accuracy she’s demonstrated at times can be almost be scary.”
by Peter Kenter Correspondent
Daily Commercial News
October 28, 2011