In this Nov. 8, 2021, file photo, a herring gull walks along a forest of pier pilings at low tide on Portland's waterfront. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Today is Thursday. Temperatures will be in the low 40s to low 50s from north to south, with rain and snow throughout the state. Here’s what we’re talking about in Maine today.

The latest on the coronavirus in Maine

Three more Mainers have died and another 938 COVID-19 cases reported across the state, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The statewide death toll now stands at 1,327.

Hospitalizations in Maine continue to rise, and on Wednesday, the state saw a record 334 people who have been afflicted with the coronavirus at hospitals across the state. There is also a record 49 people throughout Maine on ventilators.

U.S. officials on Wednesday detected the country’s first case of the new omicron variant, which is thought to be more transmissible, in California.

It’s only a ‘matter of time’ before omicron arrives in Maine, CDC head says

Medical professionals will likely start to get a fuller picture of the impact of omicron over the next few weeks, Maine CDC Director Nirav Shah said.

Justice who told Susan Collins that Roe was ‘settled law’ looks ready to allow abortion limits

It is putting Sen. Susan Collins, one of the few Republicans to support abortion rights, back in the spotlight after she helped confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the court and has been adamant that the high court would not overturn Roe v. Wade.

He hunted to feed his family. Now he fears ‘forever chemicals’ have sickened them.

Alex Poulin says his 4-year-old son loves deer meat, but contamination from ‘forever chemicals’ causes him to worry that his family is being harmed.

Brewer’s $20K bonus for police hires is among the highest in Maine

On top of the $20,000 signing bonus, the new hire in Brewer could earn up to $29.03 per hour, which works out to roughly $60,000 per year, and would be given two weeks of vacation time to start.

An Oregon museum is bringing a B-52 bomber named ‘City of Bangor’ back to life

The B-52 bomber that was named for the Queen City has had many lives, both in and out of service, both intact and later decommissioned and chopped up in the 1990s.

Janet Mills reiterates CMP corridor support as she releases $25M for local climate initiatives

Janet Mills’ initiatives would set aside $20 million in American Rescue Plan Act money to protect key state infrastructure from extreme weather.

Mainer who ID’d Oklahoma City bombing victims warns similar attack could happen again

Fred Jordan, 81, said mass casualty events, unfortunately, are fairly common in the U.S.

UMaine will significantly increase salary for new head football coach

Outgoing coach Nick Charlton made $153,000 per year, compared with the average conference head coach salary of $400,000.

PLUS: UMaine names offensive coordinator Andrew Dresner as interim head football coach

A high-tech camera can save Maine’s blueberries from climate change

Few things are more scenic than a wild blueberry barren full of plump and ripe berries. But Maine’s iconic berry crop is facing a climate crisis that threatens its future.

These are the weather conditions that make perfect snowflakes

Snowy days are upon us in Maine, and social media feeds are sure to flood with snapshots of picture-perfect snowflakes.

In other Maine news …

Maine magazine group acquired by Canadian printing company

Rockets could launch off Jonesport, but the town isn’t ready to commit

First responder recalls treacherous rescue of hiker in Aroostook State Park

Keith Urban will perform on the Bangor waterfront next summer

Mass. man sentenced to 35 years again after retrial in Aroostook slaying and robbery

Sara Gideon donating $3.5M in leftover campaign funds to legal aid group

Westbrook High School reopens months after fire caused by improper extension cord

Former Orono assistant takes next step as varsity boys basketball coach at Stearns

Sharing poetry, photos and stories connected an older community through the pandemic

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Leela Stockley

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