Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of oil and natural gas explorer Venoco (NYSE: VQ) are gushing like a Texas tea party today, rising as much as 10.4% on more than double the average trading volume.

So what: There's no obvious reason for Venoco's move. The company announced the date of its earnings report, but no actual numbers. It has no other press releases in the pipeline and no sectorwide wave of exuberance to ride on. A rash of major oil producers reported strong results last night, but that was expected and pretty much a nonevent.

Now what: Having said that, close rival Berry Petroleum (NYSE: BRY) got an analyst upgrade on the heels of a decent report earlier this week. But the market reaction, if that's what it is, has been bizarre: Venoco and another player in the same submarkets, Occidental Petroleum (NYSE: OXY), took to the skies and left Berry behind. The trading volume doesn't seem heavy enough to suggest some major institution taking a position, but maybe that's what it is.

In short: Nothing to see here. Move along.

Interested in more info on Venoco? Add it to your watchlist.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.