Chesapeake's Eagle Ford Production Soaring - Rig Count Declining

CHK Drilling Completion Allocation 2013
CHK Drilling Completion Allocation 2013

Chesapeake's Eagle Ford production grew 266% in 2012 to 143,200 gross operated (62,500 net) boe/d in the fourth quarter.

Production is expected to continue growing, but the company will be lowering its rig count even further. The company is operating 17 rigs currently and plans to average just 16 in 2013. That's down sharply from the peak of 34 and the exit rate of 22 in 2012. Spud to spud rig times have improved significantly, 18 days at year-end 2012, but not enough to offset the rig declines. That's doesn't mean fewer wells will come online this year:

Chesapeake plans to drill fewer Eagle Ford wells in 2013 than in 2012; however, the planned number of wells turned-to-sales will be roughly equal in both years.

It was just August of 2012, when CHK Planned for 22 Rigs in 2013. The latest step down is likely the reflection of more conservative development plans that will be implemented by new management. Most of what the company considers "core" or " tier 1" acreage will be held by production at year-end 2013.

CHK Eagle Ford Highlights From The Fourth Quarter

During the fourth quarter of 2012, Chesapeake achieved the following:

  • Production averaged 143,200 gross (62,500 net) boe/d
  • Completed 98 wells (down from 124 in Q3)
  • 92% of wells produced more than 500 boe/d
  • 28% of wells produced more than 1,000 boe/d

Wells noted in the company's press release included:

  • Hahn Dew 1H, in DeWitt County, TX, produced 1,985 boe/d, which included 550 bbls of oil, 360 bbls of NGL and 6.4 mmcf of natural gas per day
  • Flat Creek Unit A Dim 2H, in Dimmit County, TX, produced approximately 1,470 boe/d, which included 1,210 bbls of oil, 160 bbls of NGL and 0.6 mmcf of natural gas per day
  • The JJ Henry IX M 1H, in McMullen County, TX, produced 1,275 boe/d, which included 1,160 bbls of oil, 55 bbls of NGL and 0.4 mmcf of natural gas per day

Read the company's full press release at