Active drilling rigs in the Barnett Shale fell to the lowest since at least 2002 this week, dropping to 22, down four from a week ago, said RigData. Notable among producers was Devon Energy, the field's largest producer, running just two rigs, and notable among counties was Denton, with just one active rig. Last year Devon drilled 172 new wells in the Barnett, down 47 percent from 2012, and the Oklahoma City-based producer said Feb. 19 that it intended to cut spending in the Barnett by about 40 percent in 2014. That left EOG Resources as the busiest driller in the big North Texas natural gas field with three rigs. Jack County, which has more oil and natural gas liquids than elsewhere in the play, was the busiest county with seven rigs, followed by Montague with five, Tarrant with four and Wise with three.
Nationally, the rig count was down two to 1,769, said oilfield services contractor Baker Hughes. There were 1,430 rigs seeking crude oil, up five, 335 rigs seeking natural gas, down seven, and four miscellaneous, unchanged. A year ago there were 1,757 active rigs.
Editor's note: The Star-Telegram lacks Barnett Shale rig count records prior to January 2002. We'd welcome that information if anyone has it available.
-- Jim Fuquay