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Biological Opinion on the Issuance of Scientific Research Permit No. 2 1485 to Jookc Robbins (Center for Coastal Studies) for Research on Marine Mammals in the Western North Atlantic Ocean
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    The Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) establishes a national program for conserving threatened and endangered species of fish, wildlife, plants, and the habitat they depend on. Section 7(a)(2) of the ESA requires Federal agencies to insure that their actions are not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of endangered or threatened species or adversely modify or destroy their designated critical habitat. Federal agencies must do so in consultation with National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) for threatened or endangered species (ESA-listed) or designated critical habitat that may be affected by the action that are under NMFS jurisdiction (50 C.F.R. §402.14(a)). If a Federal action agency determines that an action “may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect” endangered species, threatened species, or designated critical habitat and NMFS concurs with that determination for species under NMFS jurisdiction, consultation concludes informally (50 C.F.R. §402.14(b)).
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