Did you know that drilling rigs spud more than 1,000 Eagle Ford wells per quarter in South Texas? To top it off, that is a conservative estimate.
Baker Hughes is known for publishing weekly rig count estimates and the company is now publishing well count estimates in many of the major plays across the U.S.
The third quarter of 2012 was the first quarter that well starts in the Eagle Ford eclipsed 1,000. The number of wells spud fell below 1,000 in the fourth quarter and rose back above that level in both the first and second quarter of 2013.
Since the beginning of 2012, rigs have spud approximately:
- Q1 2012 - 876 wells
- Q2 2012 - 932 wells
- Q3 2012 - 1,024 wells
- Q4 2012 - 974 wells
- Q1 2013 - 1,044 wells
- Q2 2013 - 1,050 wells
We consider these conservative estimates because Baker Hughes only considers a 14 county area in its Eagle Ford statistics. That leaves out areas like Brazos County, where Halcon is ramping up development of the Eagle Ford. Considering all data points, it's likely well spuds surpassed 1,100 in the second quarter of 2013.
Eagle Ford Drilling Crews Are Getting More Efficient
It's no secret that drilling is speeding up as operators and crews gain experience in the Eagle Ford. When the Baker data begins in the first quarter of 2012, the average rig in the play was drilling 3.74 wells. The average rig drilled 4.56 wells in the second quarter of 2013. That's a 22% improvement or, more impressively, almost one more well per rig per quarter. I'd say that's pretty good improvement in just a little over a year.
With almost 250 of the 270+ rigs in the region targeting the Eagle Ford, it looks like we'll see 1,000 wells drilled per quarter for the foreseeable future.
The Permian Basin of West Texas is the only basin or region with more activity than the Eagle Ford. Operators target multiple plays across in the Permian and the area has almost twice as many rigs running.