Eagle Ford Area Rig Count at 267 – March 30, 2012

Working Rig Count Falls Below 270 for the First Time Since March 2

The Eagle Ford Shale drilling rig count fell 4 rigs for the second consecutive week to 267 active in the region.  This week marks the first time we’ve fallen below 270 in almost a month.  In reality, a few rig difference isn’t likely much of a difference at all.  In any given week, there area likely 10+ rigs waiting to spud or moving locations.

If you haven’t been to South Texas lately, consider a day trip to one of the more active areas of the play. We drove through much of the eastern portion of the play on our way to visit the job fair in Robstown on Wednesday. Every town has new buildings, restaurants, and hotels. It’s truly an amazing site. The Eagle Ford is providing economic stimulus that is re-shaping the economy of South Texas.

Eagle Ford Oil & Gas Rigs

Natural gas directed rigs fell 1 to 75 running this week. We’re down almost exactly 50 rigs from the gas rig peak in October. Over 50% of the active gas rigs are running in DeWitt and Webb Counties alone. Oil directed activity fell for the second week in a row. There are 191 active oil rigs running as of this week.

Natural gas prices have blown through 10-year lows and are trading at $2.12/mmbtu as of Friday afternoon. Oil prices fell a few dollars to $103 per barrel (WTI), as the overall equity and commodity markets fell this week. Keep an eye on the economy in the coming weeks. The economy (demand) is half the equation in determining the oil price. With the first quarter almost under wraps, the S&P 500 isn’t sending positive signals. The benchmark index would have been down almost 2% in the first quarter if it hadn’t been for significant growth from Apple. Apple single handedly brought the entire index to even over the past three months.

252 horizontal rigs are running and we have 1 storage well being drilled in La Salle County. Karnes County leads development with 42 rigs. La Salle (41), Webb (32), DeWitt (28), McMullen (23), Gonzales (22), Dimmit (10), Atascosa (10), and Live Oak (10) make up the top Eagle Ford counties.

Cal Chapma, PE, contributed an informative article regarding AC-Induced Corrosion on Pipelines. If you’re working the midstream side of the business in South Texas, it’s a must read.

News from the week included:

If you’re traveling to San Antonio soon, be sure to visit our Eagle Ford Hotels page. We’ve negotiated discounted rates with hotels that are welcoming the Oil & Gas Industry.

Come back weekly for updates each week or sign up for alerts – Email Subscribe Link]

Drilling Rig Count by Operator


Operator Name Prior Week Current Week
Chesapeake 34 34
EOG Resources 30 29
Petrohawk (BHP) 19 20
ConocoPhillips 17 17
Marathon Oil (Hilcorp) 16 16
Pioneer Natural 13 12
Lewis Petroleum 11 11
Talisman Energy (Statoil) 11 11
Anadarko 11 9
Murphy Oil 8 9
Plains Exploration 9 9
Shell 6 6
SM Energy 6 6
Swift Energy 6 6
Carrizo Oil & Gas 5 4
Cheyenne Energy 4 4
Hunt Oil 5 4
Rosetta 4 4
Exxon (XTO 4 4
El Paso 3 3
All Others 49 49
Total 271 267

What is the Rig Count?

The Eagle Ford Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across a 30 county area in South Texas. The South Texas rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by SmithBits and not solely wells targeting the Eagle Ford formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count and/or Smith Service Co’s (Schlumberger) Smith Rig Count.

Drilling Rigs by County

Texas County Prior Week Current Week Texas County Prior Week Current Week
KARNES 41 42 BRAZOS 2 2
LA SALLE 38 41 FAYETTE 2 2
WEBB 32 32 LEE 2 2
DEWITT 29 28 MAVERICK 2 2
MCMULLEN 25 23 WILSON 3 2
GONZALES 22 22 GRIMES 1 1
DIMMIT 21 19 MILAM 1 1
ATASCOSA 10 10 ROBERTSON 1 1
LIVE OAK 10 10 AUSTIN 0 0
LAVACA 7 7 BASTROP 0 0
MADISON 7 7 BURLESON 0 0
FRIO 5 4 COLORADO 0 0
LEON 4 4 DUVAL 0 0
ZAVALA 3 3 GOLIAD 0 0
BEE 3 2 Washington 0 0
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R.T. Dukes

R.T. Dukes

Managing Editor at EagleFordShale.com
R.T. is the managing editor of EagleFordShale.com. In prior roles, he advised major oil companies on strategy, the macro business environment, and opportunity screening. 2503 Robinhood, Houston, TX, 77005, U.S.A. | Telephone: 832.429.4790

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