Houston-based ZaZa Energy has completed drilling and casing its Eaglebine Stingray A-1H well in Walker County, TX, and said evaluation results are “very encouraging,” with estimates of 21 Bcf of gas and 29 million bbl of oil per section in place. ZaZa said it expects to begin hydraulic fracturing operations on Nov. 12, with initial production planned for late November.

Based on initial information gathered from the Stingray A-1H well, the ZaZa has entered into a multi-well rig contract with Nabors Drilling USA, is preparing to install production facilities, and has entered into a multi-year lease for a field office and yard near its Eaglebine acreage in Walker County as it further appraises and delineates its Eaglebine acreage.

“Today, the Eaglebine play is one of the most exciting, emerging, liquids-rich resource plays in the country, and the data we have in-house supports this sentiment,” Brooks said. “As the first mover in the Eaglebine play, ZaZa holds what it believes to be some of the Eaglebine’s most promising and untapped acreage. We have amassed a dominant, nearly contiguous land position of about 90,000 net acres located in the thickest part of the play.”

According to SmithBits data and NGI‘s Shale Daily calculations, there were 26 rigs operating in the Eaglebine as of Nov. 2. Twenty-three of those rigs were involved in horizontal drilling, with the other three involved in vertical drilling. Halcon Resources was the lead operator in the play with five rigs, followed by Enervest and Manek Exploration, which each had two rigs in operation.

With seven rigs operating within its borders, Madison County, TX, was the leading Eaglebine county, followed by Leon County, TX, with six rigs and Brazos County, TX, with four rigs.

“Although early drilling in this area has initially proved challenging for some operators, ZaZa has overcome these obstacles through new drilling processes and technological innovation developed by its experienced operations team, a team with a collective knowledge-base derived from successfully drilling over 7,500 horizontal wells,” Brooks said. “As a result of these new processes and innovations, ZaZa now has the ability to control and further develop these assets and unlock both short- and long-term value. All of our data indicates high productive potential and we are now focused on making the Eaglebine our core, foundation asset.”

Additionally, ZaZa said it expects to secure a “substantive” joint venture agreement for the Eaglebine acreage. “Additionally, based on production results and initial appraisal data in the company’s Sweet Home Black Hawk Field Extension play, ZaZa will continue its asset prioritization process beyond the Paris Basin and will allocate resources consistent with a highest and best value creation philosophy.”

Brooks said the company’s capital structure has been strengthened over the last several months. “…[A]s a result, [we] are in a much stronger and more stable position to further develop and prove up our Eaglebine assets while supplementing our existing activities in our Eagle Ford acreage,” he said.