Michael Watford, chairman, president and CEO of Ultra Petroleum, said: “We are strategically increasing the scale of our Marcellus position with assets that rival the returns of our current acreage. With this acquisition, we believe that our net recovered resource in the Marcellus alone will exceed 8.5 trillion cubic feet equivalent (Tcfe), an increase of 3.5 Tcfe from current estimates.”

The company expects the transaction to close late February 2010, subject to standard closing conditions, with an effective date of October 1, 2009.

The company said that it has drilled 30 horizontal wells with 13 producing. The initial production rates for the producing wells average 7,500Mcf per day with preliminary estimated ultimate recoveries (EURs) ranging from 3.5 to 4Bcf. The company started 2009 with 288,000 gross (152,000 net) acres in the Marcellus.