we are wondering why our royalties continue to drop we have been receiving them for 3 years we were told after the first year it would level off and the second year would be half of what the 1st year but that has not been the case it is now about a third and it is continuing to drop at least 100$ every month some times more is it possible that they are not letting it produce or  is it really not producing just wondering if anyone else is dropping  we are in noble county

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if the lateral spacing has drained the entire formation there would be nothing gained to drill closer spaced laterals. there is discussion with Eclipse here using 1200' spacing and possibly "wineracking" in the future with fill in's at a slightly different depth in 280' thick shale formation. that is wide spacing to start and i would think you are closer in Ohio. maybe 750' in older development and 1000' in newer. the highest financial returns now to the companies is thought to be 1000'. with high intensity zipper fracturing i would not expect much gas left between laterals.

The information provided by Bullfrex and Old Timer is excellent. Also, In order to know your royalties due, then you need to know production and how it is being sold. If the operator does not own the pipeline, then it may have a cap on delivery quantities. Or a variable price contract. Sales contracts with pipelines make a normal lease look like fun reading. If ever possible, try for an audit clause in your lease. If too late, try to use the Freedom of Information Act to acquire your entire well file----as drilled plat (what the unit ended up looking like), completion report for well (should show exactly what happened during drilling), and depending where you are production should be available quarterly. I do not know what Ohio requires now, but worth a look. Companies drill under permit, which is a government document, and thus available to citizens. Other filings are required pursuant to this process, and if the government has it, you (Joe and Jane Citizen) have a right to it. Personally, my thoughts are that every landowner should get a copy of every filing that relates to their land. Since that does not happen, ask. Use API and name of lateral.
It never stops
I have seen 75% to 80% declination over 5 yr period to the point 92 unitized acres in 4 sepetate units at 15.50% bring in about $ 1400.00 per month or approx $15.21 per acre from a well that produced over 1 BCF in its first 3 months of production. My question is what are they going to do with these depleted wells ? Come in and restimulate ?
Drill deeper or shallow off same pad ? Or just move onto undeveloped acerage and drill that. Infill drilling with verticals like the Barnett. No answers so far

i've looked at the history of gas production since it's beginning. we are all in the same boat. it's like watching the tail end of a parade. once a play held by production declines they just move on to more productive fields. BOOM and BUST! always was always will be. we had a shallow boom here in the 1930's for just twenty years. now it's gangbusters Utica. twenty years from now we'll hear the crickets again and be right back in poverty.

As far as re-fracking goes I believe the companies are far more concerned with holding acreage by production than re-fracking. 

I would agree with that right now for sure, but maybe in the future it will be used.  Right now, as you say, I am sure they are concentrating their time and resources on locking up as much of the acreage they have under lease as possible.

The production declines of the Utica are sharp and pronounced, coming sooner rather than later. Monitor the production of the well to verify, and also consider that things can and do change rather quickly in this business overall.

If there is one piece of information that I could pick to add to the matter it would be some way to quantify the choke on the well.


Would you look at the production numbers on your royalty statement for us and please tell us if you are indeed suffering a steep production decline ?

i don't know what format data is available for folks in Ohio, but here in Pa. i look at any company chosen reported production on any well by starting with first month production at bottom of screen. looking only at days of prod. and total production, quickly scroll up to present report. some companys heavily control their wells and some much less so. Seneca actual decline rates much harder to determine than say Cabot. the only way to determine a true decline rate in any well is to find a wide open in any time period. good luck. i would use 24mo. steepest ROD followed by another maybe 18 mo.less rapid ROD, followed by as yet to be determined viable production period at much less rapid ROD. the last 30% left behind is the ball i am watching as ultimate recovery over well lifetime means more total dollars over well life . technology is accomplishing this with each new well drilled. 

I worked with some horizontal wells and many highly deviated wells, mostly in conventional reservoirs. I'm not aware of many re-stimulations in low-permeability shales, and I'm more than skeptical about the probability of success in most plays, for a variety of reasons.

There will be a number of competing ideas, such as surface compression, pipeline looping, choke changeouts, etc., before infill drilling or re-stimulations will be performed on a large scale, in my opinion.


brian. are you basically thinking methods of coaxing the well bores on reduced producing wells towards underbalanced bore pressure to "straw suck" the last remaining gas.?

OT -

I'm thinking about economical methods to reduce or remove pressure reducing restrictions, or "nodes" from the reservoir casing/tubing to surface gathering system interface. A well won't naturally flow if it's surface pressure is insufficient to overcome the pipeline back-pressure.

In many operator budgets, ideas have to compete with other options to be adopted. Ideas are planned and prioritized, then re-prioritized, in order to get the most bang for the buck. It's been that way before Titusville and Spindletop, and it will be that way until the last well is plugged.


brian. are you hearing anything from inside as to the effect "zipper fracturing" is having if any on well performance. they just started doing it here in the last year to my knowledge. Shell has been going that direction and Eclipse will be for economic reasons. they are Shells highest performers to date but some geologists have concerns regarding effect on the formation. to those who may not be familiar it just means fracking multiple wells on the same pad at the same time essentially. the concern i've heard is such large area effect . seismic, inter-well conductivity etc. so far production is huge on these pads . haven't heard of any negatives yet.


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