For the quarter ended December 31, 2007, Delta Petroleum reported total production of 5.03 Bcfe, which was in the mid range of previously stated guidance. Production increased 34% when compared with the fourth quarter of 2006 and 10% from third quarter 2007 levels.
Total revenue increased 21% to $45.1 million in the fourth quarter, compared with $37.3 million in the quarter ended December 31, 2006. Revenue from oil and gas sales increased 57% to $31.3 million, compared with $19.9 million in the prior year quarter.
The increase in oil and gas revenue when compared with the corresponding period of the previous year was primarily due to the significant increase in production from continuing operations. Revenue from contract drilling and trucking fees decreased 32% to $11.5 million, versus $16.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2006 due to an increase in DHS Drilling Company revenues from Delta which are eliminated in consolidation. EBITDAX totaled $26.6 million during the three months ended December 31, 2007, compared with $17.9 million in the three months ended December 31, 2006.
Discretionary cash flow increased 61% to $22.5 million, versus $14.0 million in the comparable 2006 quarter.
The Company reported a fourth quarter net loss of ($30.0 million), or ($0.47) per share, compared with a net loss of ($10.5 million), or ($0.20) per share, in the fourth quarter of 2006. The fourth quarter 2007 loss included $11.3 million of dry hole costs related to three exploratory wells, $5.4 million of losses on ineffective derivative instruments, $4.8 million of non- cash equity compensation expense and a $4.2 million loss from DHS Drilling Company.
Lease operating expense for the three months ended December 31, 2007 totaled $5.9 million, compared with $4.2 million in the comparable prior year quarter. Lease operating expense from continuing operations for onshore properties approximated $1.18 per thousand cubic feet equivalents (Mcfe) in the fourth quarter, compared with $1.44 per Mcfe in the year earlier period.
Depreciation, depletion and amortization expense -- oil and gas -- was $17.7 million for the three months ended December 31, 2007, versus $16.2 million in the comparable year earlier period. Depletion expense decreased from a rate of $5.77 per Mcfe in the fourth quarter 2006 to a rate of $4.02 per Mcfe in the fourth quarter 2007.
Exploration expense consists of geological and geophysical costs and lease rentals. The Company's exploration costs for the three months ended December 31, 2007 totaled $2.9 million, compared with $1.3 million in the prior year period. Exploration expense for the fourth quarter 2007 primarily related to seismic projects in Utah, Wyoming and Texas.
General and administrative expense increased 39.4% to $12.3 million during the fourth quarter of 2007, versus $8.8 million in the three months ended December 31, 2006. The increase in general and administrative expense was primarily due to higher non-cash equity compensation costs of $3.1 million.
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