Rustler Aquifer | Texas Water Development Board

Rustler Aquiferinteractive map | cross-section

Aquifer Facts

  • Aquifer type: confined and unconfined
  • Area of outcrop: 311 square miles
  • Area of subsurface: 4,881 square miles
  • Proportion of aquifer with groundwater conservation districts: 76 percent
  • Number of counties containing the aquifer: 7

Summary

The Rustler Aquifer is a minor aquifer located in Brewster, Culberson, Jeff Davis, Loving, Pecos, Reeves, and Ward counties. The aquifer consists of the carbonates and evaporites of the Rustler Formation, which is the youngest unit of the Late Permian Ochoan Series. The Rustler Formation is 250 to 670 feet thick and extends downdip into the subsurface toward the center of the Delaware Basin to the east. It becomes thinner along the eastern margin of the Delaware Basin and across the Central Basin Platform and Val Verde Basin. There it conformably overlies the Salado Formation. Groundwater occurs in partly dissolved dolomite, limestone, and gypsum. Most of the water production comes from fractures and solution openings in the upper part of the formation.

Although some parts of the aquifer produce freshwater containing less than 1,000 milligrams per liter of total dissolved solids, the water is generally slightly to moderately saline and contains total dissolved solids ranging between 1,000 and 4,600 milligrams per liter.

The water is used primarily for irrigation, livestock, and waterflooding operations in oil-producing areas.

Reports

ID Date Type Description
Texas Aquifers Study 12/31/2016 Legislative Report Texas Aquifers Study: Groundwater Quantity, Quality, Flow, and Contributions to Surface Water
R-317 1/1/1990 TWDB numbered report Evaluation of Ground-Water Resources in Parts of Loving, Pecos, Reeves, Ward and Winkler Counties, Texas
HA-09 1/1/1998 Hydrologic atlas Water Quality in the Rustler Aquifer
R-356 12/1/2001 TWDB numbered report Aquifers of West Texas
AA06-01 6/10/2008 Aquifer assessment Water-level decline scenarios for the Capitan Reef Complex, Marathon, Rustler, Presidio-Redford Bolson, Edwards-Trinity (Plateau), and Diablo Plateau aquifers in Groundwater Management Area 4
AA09-11 9/21/2010 Aquifer assessment Desired future condition scenarios for the Rustler Aquifer in Groundwater Management Area 4
AA10-25_MAG 8/23/2011 Aquifer assessment MAG Managed available groundwater estimates for the Rustler Aquifer in Groundwater Management Area 4
AA10-37_MAG 11/3/2011 Aquifer assessment MAG Modeled available groundwater for the Rustler Aquifer in Groundwater Management Area 3
AA10-13_MAG 11/18/2011 Aquifer assessment MAG Modeled available groundwater for the Rustler Aquifer in Groundwater Management Area 7
AA10-13_MAG 11/18/2011 Aquifer assessment MAG Modeled available groundwater for the Rustler Aquifer in Groundwater Management Area 7
R-380 7/1/2011 TWDB numbered report Aquifers of Texas
GR12-023_MP_Add 2/11/2013 GAM run - Management Plan Addendum to GAM Run 12-023 to include Ruster Aquifer information
GT13-027_TERS 9/19/2013 GAM task - Total Estimated Recoverable Storage Total Estimated Recoverable Storage for aquifers in Groundwater Management Area 3
GT13-030_TERS 10/2/2013 GAM task - Total Estimated Recoverable Storage Total Estimated Recoverable Storage for aquifers in Groundwater Management Area 7
GR13-020_MP 10/7/2013 GAM run - Management Plan Management Plan data for Brewster County GCD
GT13-028_TERS 1/15/2014 GAM task - Total Estimated Recoverable Storage Total Estimated Recoverable Storage for aquifers in Groundwater Management Area 4
GR14-010_MP 3/26/2014 GAM run - Management Plan Management Plan data for Middle Pecos GCD
GR18-001_MP 5/10/2018 GAM run - Management Plan Management plan information for Reeves County GCD
GR19-008_MP 2/27/2019 GAM run - Management Plan Management plan information for Brewster County GCD
GR19-021_MP 2/20/2020 GAM run - Management Plan Management plan information for Middle Pecos GCD
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