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The Northeast Implementation Team (NEIT) for the Recovery of the North Atlantic Right Whale

In developing and implementing recovery plans for endangered species, section 4(f)(2) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA) allows for appropriate state, public and private agencies, institutions, and other qualified persons to assist in the development and implementation of a recovery plan.  The appointed recovery teams are not subject to the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), and therefore have no legal authority and are advisory in nature, serving at the request of NOAA Fisheries Service. 

The NEIT was initially established in 1994 as the Northeast Large Whale Recovery Plan Implementation Team to help facilitate the implementation of recovery plan tasks identified in the North Atlantic right, humpback, fin, sei and blue whale recovery plans. Because vessel collisions have been identified as one of two primary human-caused sources of injury and mortality to the critically endangered right whale, the implementation team was restructured in May 2004 to focus exclusively on North Atlantic right whale ship strike reduction and support of the National NOAA Ship Strike Reduction Strategy Working Group.