One of the most actively drilled formations in the U.S., the Eagle Ford Formation covers much of South Texas and has over 6,300 well permits and approximately 280 rigs operating as of October, 2014.
The formation runs deeper the further south and west the formation gets, with dry gas being found in the deeper, more southern counties, wet gas and condensate being prominent just north of that, then oil being abundant in the most northern region running from Mexico’s border all the way up to Brazos and Grimes counties.
Eagle Ford History
The original discovery of the Eagle Ford Shale was in Eagle Ford, Texas, which was a small settlement just west of Dallas. You can actually see an outcrop of the formation off Kiest Blvd. and Ledbetter Dr., about a half mile east of highway 408 (General map area below – image to right – source). The original well was drilled in 2008 by Petrohawk and resulted in the discovery of the Hawkville Field in La Salle County.
Map of Outcrop General Location
Detailed Eagle Ford Formation Coverage Area
The Eagle Ford Shale is approximately 50 miles wide and 400 miles long, running from Maverick and Webb counties, along the Mexican border, northeast to Leon, Madison, and Walker counties in East Texas.
It covers the following 30 counties: Atascosa, Austin, Bastrop, Bee, Brazos, Burleson, Colorado, DeWitt, Dimmit, Duval, Fayette, Frio, Goliad, Gonzales, Grimes, Karnes, La Salle, Lavaca, Lee, Leon, Live Oak, Madison, Maverick, McMullen, Milam, Robertson, Washington, Webb, Wilson, and Zavala.
There are approximately 22 active and 17 inactive fields as of October 2014.
Who’s Drilling What in Eagle Ford
There are currently over 100 active outfits operating in the Eagle Ford Formation area, including many smaller drillers and the big boys like BP, Exxon, etc.
The majority, about 260, of these operations are drilling for oil, while only approximately 20 are drilling for gas. Again, this data is approximate and was gathered in October of 2014.
Current Eagle Ford Operator List
Alta Mesa Holdings, Ambassador Petroleum, Anadarko, Apache Corp, Argent Energy Trust, Aruba Petroleum, Aterra Exploration, Aurora Resources, Austin Exploration (Aus-Tex Expl.), AWP Operating, BHP Billiton, Blackbrush Oil & Gas, BP, Braxas Petroleum, BRC Operating, Burnett Oil, Cabot Oil & Gas, Carrizo Oil & Gas, Chaparral Energy, Chesapeake Energy, Cheyenne Petroleum, Cinco Resources, Clayton Williams Energy, Comstock Resources, ConocoPhillips – (Burlington Resources), CML Exploration, CNOOC (China National Offshore Oil Corporation), Cypress, E&P, Crimson Exploration (Contango Oil), Denali Oil & Gas, Devon Energy, Diamond Sabal Operating, Eagle Ford Oil & Gas Corp., EF, Energy, El Paso, Enduring Resources, Enerjex Resources, EOG Resources, Escondido Resources, Espada Operating, EXCO Resources, Exxon-XTO, Forest Oil, GAIL (Gas Authority of India Limited), GeoResources Inc., Goodrich Petroleum, Global Petroleum, Halcon Resources, Hess Corporation, Hilcorp, Resources (Acquired by Marathon), Hunt Oil, Jadela Oil, Japan Petroleum Exploration, KNOC (Korea National Oil Corporation), Laredo Energy, Lewis Energy Group (BP Partner), Lonestar Resources, Lucas Energy, Magnum Hunter Resources, Marathon Oil, Marubeni Corporation (Hunt Oil Partner), Matador Resources, McMinn Operating, Mitsui, Murphy Oil, Newfield Exploration, NFR Energy, Penn Virginia Corp, Peregrine Petroleum, PetroEdge, PetroHawk (now BHP), PetroQuest, Pioneer Natural Resources, Plains Exploration & Production, Primera Energy, Redemption Oil & Gas, Reichmann Petroleum, Reliance Industries, Ricochet Energy, Riley Exploration, Rock Oil Company, Rosetta Resources, Sabine Oil & Gas, San Isidro Development (Acquired by Chesapeake), Sanchez Energy, Sandstone Energy, LLC, Saxon Oil Company, Shell, SM Energy (St. Mary Land & Exploration), Southern Bay Operating, Statoil, Stonegate Production, Strand Energy, Strike Energy, Swift Energy, Talisman Energy, Texas American Resources, Texon Petroleum, Tidal Petroleum, TXCO, Resources (Now, Newfield & Anadarko), Unit Corporation, U.S. Energy Corp., Weber Energy, WEJCO E&P, and ZaZa Energy.
Investing In the Eagle Ford Shale Formation
Due to the large abundance of oil in the Eagle Ford area, and the large number of operators, this is a great place to look for investment opportunities. Also, it is still a fairly new market, so the future is bright for production. The key, as always, is locating an opportunity that has been well researched and is being drilled by a reputable oil company.
Before You Invest, Read This
If you’re looking at an oil or gas investment opportunity in the Eagle Ford Shale operating area, make sure you have the best due diligence knowledge to improve your likelihood of success. Download our guide below, which also includes an easy to follow legit meter to evaluate the company you are working with and the opportunity.