The international trade in exotic animal parts includes rhino horn, seahorses, and bear gall bladders. But perhaps none is as strange as the swim bladder from a giant Mexican fish called the totoaba.

The totoaba can grow to the size of a football player. It lives only in the Gulf of California in Mexico, along with the world's smallest and rarest mammal — a type of porpoise called the vaquita.

When Carolyn Coyne's lab at the University of Pittsburgh recently tried to order a sample of Zika virus from a major laboratory supplier, they were told it was out of stock.

"They are actually back-ordered until July for the virus," Coyne says. "At least that's what we were told." She ended up obtaining Zika from another source, and it arrived at her lab Tuesday.

U.S. churches are again defying federal immigration authorities. Across the country, a handful of congregations are opening their doors to offer safe haven to Central American immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally and are under deportation orders.

The new sanctuary movement echoes an earlier civil disobedience campaign by churches in the 1980s.

The newest church in America to openly challenge federal immigration laws is St. Andrew's Presbyterian in Austin, Texas. Ten days ago, the congregation took in Hilda and Ivan Ramirez, a Guatemalan mother and her 9-year-old son.

Michigan officials present plan to boost state's schools

5 hours ago

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - State Superintendent Brian Whiston has presented a plan aimed at catapulting Michigan schools into one of the nation's top educational systems.

cironline.org

Michigan’s Gaming Control Board began looking into the legality of daily fantasy sports betting websites like Fan Duel and Draft Kings late last year. Other states are doing the same. Tuesday night, February 9th at 10 PM on WGVU-HD a FRONTLINE and New York Times investigation into the world of online sports betting.

www.idigitaltimes.com

We’re about two months away from the filing deadline for tax returns. A warning from the Kent County Sheriff’s Department: Beware of an IRS fraud scam.  

This is not a new scam. Still, there are people who fall for it out of fear that the Internal Revenue Service is coming after you for back taxes.

A federal judge has ordered the Justice Department to file court briefs by Wednesday explaining why some portion of the remaining Hillary Clinton emails, subject to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit by Vice News, cannot be produced by Feb. 18.

U.S. District Judge Rudolph Contreras said after a 30-minute hearing in federal court in Washington, D.C., that the government "has put me between a rock and a hard place" with respect to 7,000 pages of yet-to-be-released Clinton emails from her tenure at the State Department.

The mayor of Hawaii County has declared a state of emergency on Hawaii's Big Island over an outbreak of mosquito-borne dengue fever.

The island has seen nearly 250 confirmed cases of the mosquito-borne virus since September 2015. State health officials first reported two cases that originated there in late October 2015, Mayor Billy Kenoi says in his declaration.

The lawyer in charge of state Attorney General Bill Schuette’s investigation into the Flint water crisis says some people may be charged with serious crimes before it’s all over.

Todd Flood says criminal charges could include official misconduct by public officials and involuntary manslaughter, depending on what the investigation uncovers. The inquiry will cover both the lead contamination of the drinking water, and outbreaks of Legionnaire’s disease that caused 10 deaths.

In a further sign that Cuban baseball is in shambles, Cuban state media reports that two of the island's brightest stars left their team in Santo Domingo after competing in the Caribbean Series.

Lourdes Gourriel Jr., 22, and his older brother Yulieski, 31, left the team hotel in the early morning on Monday.

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