Our family had seismic work conducted on our farm by TGS / Cougar Land Services in 2012. They were reasonable with the agreement, worked professionally and abided by the terms of our agreement.
You still see seismic work in the area now because it can be conducted in different levels of detail. It can provide data useful to the operation and continuing development of existing wellfields. A drilled well gives you information about a small volume of the rock surrounding the wellbore. Seismic data can provide more information about the area between wellbores. It can be acquired and interpreted for large areas for less cost than drilling more infill wells. It can point to better location of future wells among other things.
My woodlot of 45 ac. and the thumper trucks went by on the road, couple of years later they came through with ground crew , helicopters , then later back drilled a few holes set off charges , after they left i found a few shovels of fine gravel. and two ribbons they missed. was not there when they set of the charges. after that they drilled a well a few hundred yards away. ....... have been getting a few hundred bucks a month for a corner of the leased wood lot, gosh that was easy, check in bank every month and i haven't even talked to any one sense they done the seismic.
Life is Good as they say..........
Ps. i don't remember signing any papers for the test just told them to take there lunch and enjoy over the phone.
We had a seismic done on a farm back in the 70's. They drilled holes 30' deep, filled with explosives and then fired. When they did this, it caused a fracture that allowed water to come to the surface (a spring). This was in a field and we could not stop the water from flooding our crops. We had to run tile lines to each hole to fix the mess so that we could farm the field again. The seismic company did not pay for anything and we had a lot of expense.
In 2012, another company came through and wanted to do the same thing. We fought them and won in court. They sued us again. They won the second round, but we were able to keep them from using explosives (they used thumper trucks) because our lease forbid it. They caused significant damage to our crops. We negotiated a settlement, but they never paid. Our lawyer fought them for two years and it cost $30,000 in lawyer fees. We were never able to collect a cent from them because they knew every trick.
I rent several farms and the owners allowed them to use explosives. They left bags of gravel and wires everywhere. They trampled a path through my wheat field (no vehicles, just foot traffic).
I had another small farm that they went around. If you are small, they will go around you very easily and still able to get all the data they need.
I highly recommend denying them access unless they pay you for damages before the testing is done. They do not have any incentive to pay you after. I think they offered us $6 an acre and did approximately $30 per acre damage. Again, I never received a cent before or after. BEWARE!