Natural gas production is booming -- so much so that some investors worry that natural gas could be the most dangerous investment in energy.

I disagree, but investors must realize that the huge growth in production is keeping natural gas prices really low, and there will probably be pain before there are large gains. That said, there are good opportunities in natural gas for investors willing to look.

Getting to the point, the Natural Gas Supply Association released a paper on the largest U.S. natural gas producers. The data was interesting enough that I reproduced the top 25 here.

Rank

Company

Q2 Production (MMcf/Day)

Q1 Production (MMcf/Day)

Year Ago (MMcf/Day)

1 ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM) 3,842 3,904 3,909
2 Chesapeake Energy (NYSE: CHK) 2,575 2,703 2,497
3 Anadarko (NYSE: APC) 2,326 2,412 2,324
4 Devon Energy (NYSE: DVN) 2,029 1,964 1,982
5 Encana (NYSE: ECA) 1,864 1,801 2,240
6 BP (NYSE: BP) 1,833 1,905 1,875
7 ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) 1,651 1,589 1,822
8 Southwestern Energy (NYSE: SWN) 1,347 1,277 1,077
9 Chevron (NYSE: CVX) 1,299 1,270 1,317
10 Williams Energy (NYSE: WMB) 1,203 1,155 1,099
11 EOG Resources (NYSE: EOG) 1,114 1,134 1,069
12 Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE: RDS-B) 903 1,003 1,145
13 Apache (NYSE: APA) 880 858 675
14 Petrohawk Energy* 841 743 599
15 Occidental (NYSE: OXY) 761 734 681
16 El Paso Energy (NYSE: EP) 629 630 526
17 Ultra Petroleum (NYSE: UPL) 627 600 590
18 QEP Resources (NYSE: QEP) 626 657 554
19 Newfield Exploration (NYSE: NFX) 516 503 564
20 EXCO Resources (NYSE: XCO) 489 395 321
21 EQT Resources (NYSE: EQT) 482 446 281
22 Cabot Oil & Gas (NYSE: COG) 474 404 318
23 Noble Energy (NYSE: NBL) 378 382 414
24 Range Resources (NYSE: RRC) 361 430 279
25 Pioneer Natural (NYSE: PXD) 337 325 334

Source: Natural Gas Supply Association. 
*Petrohawk Energy was acquired by BHP Billiton in July.

These stocks are a good place to start your research, but they're not formal recommendations by any means. Natural gas is changing the face of energy in North America. If you're looking for a stock idea to profit from it, check out The Motley Fool's free report, "The Only Energy Stock You'll Ever Need." In it, Fool analysts detail a company that will benefit from the natural gas boom and pays a dividend. Grab your own copy.

Fool contributor Dan Dzombak holds no position in any company mentioned. He goes by @DanDzombak on Twitter. The Motley Fool owns shares of El Paso, Ultra Petroleum, Range Resources, and Devon Energy. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Chevron, Range Resources, Chesapeake Energy, and Ultra Petroleum and writing puts in Southwestern Energy. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.