The Williston Basin rig count settled at 185 rigs running to end April. That's according to Baker Hughes and includes rigs active in the Montana portion of the basin.
All but approximately five rigs in the basin are drilling in areas prospective for the Bakken and Three Forks formations.
The rig count in the area hit a peak of 224 in June of 2012 and has fallen almost 80% since. Much of the decline has been the result of the use of pad drilling where one rig can drill more wells per year.
Acreage across the region is largely held by production or will be by year-end 2013. That means operators can slow down and focus on efficiency of development.