In this Nov. 8, 2021, file photo, a herring gull squawks on Portland's waterfront. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Today is Friday. Temperatures will be in the mid-30s to mid-40s from north to south, with rain and a chance for snow throughout the state. Here’s what we’re talking about in Maine today.

The latest on the coronavirus in Maine

Another 548 COVID-19 cases have been reported across the state, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. No new deaths were reported Thursday, leaving the statewide death toll standing at 1,303.

The state set a new record for COVID-19 hospitalizations Thursday, with 327 Mainers hospitalized with the virus. Of those, a record 108 Mainers are in critical care, while another 39 are on ventilators.

Maine will see COVID-19 cases dip after holidays, but it doesn’t mean transmission is down

While reported cases often decline around the holidays, travel and family gatherings pose increased COVID-19 risks, particularly for unvaccinated people.

Few health care workers have quit over Maine’s vaccine mandate

But the state still faces a shortage of health care workers as the pandemic continues.

Bangor wants people to leave homeless encampment under I-395

Those who don’t leave by Dec. 1 will be issued trespass orders.

Work still hasn’t started on Bucksport salmon farm 2 years after it was approved

Whole Oceans has basically everything it needs to start work at the old Verso paper mill site. But it hasn’t.

The Passamaquoddy Tribe is keeping its culture alive a drumbeat at a time

Like other Native Americans, they believe their drums are living, breathing entities.

Maine’s $800M budget windfall will define election-year wrangling in Augusta

Democrats are being coy about their priorities, but Gov. Janet Mills has signaled a desire to negotiate with Republicans who are eyeing a substantial refund to taxpayers.

Quarry landfills started as a good idea a century ago, but are now a problem

Since quarries over time fill with water, the disposal of waste into them has been prohibited in Maine for decades.

Bangor library is the only one in New England to host this touring Holocaust exhibit

The exhibit challenges the common assumption that Americans didn’t know about the Nazi persecution and mass murder of Jews.

A guide to understanding the fight over whales and lobster gear in the Gulf of Maine

Understanding the ongoing battle is difficult for anyone not intimately involved in it.

Coyotes caught frolicking in the dark on Eddington trail camera

The animals appear to be enjoying a bit of play time.

In other Maine news …

Winterport man extradited from Texas after being accused of making child pornography

Former ed-tech at Portland elementary school pleads not guilty to federal sex crimes

Maine insulation firm raising $85M to rehab former Madison paper mill

Maine’s 1st nonalcoholic brewery is about to ship its inaugural batch

The Portland Museum of Art has reached an agreement with its new union

Solar farm will pay Old Town $25K a year to lease city land

South Berwick police chief on leave after insulting other town’s officers

Scarborough 911 dispatcher helps family deliver healthy baby

Dispute over reproduction rights of Robert Indiana’s ‘HOPE’ artwork sent back to court

Portland police think pellet guns shattered car windows with drivers behind the wheel

Portland selects company to launch its bike share next year

Leela Stockley

Leela Stockley is an alumna of the University of Maine. She was raised in northern Maine, and loves her cat Wesley and staying active in the Maine outdoors.