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City shouldn't expand hobby beekeeping: report

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Winnipeg will not be abuzz with more hobby beekeepers.

A new city report, released this morning, recommends Winnipeg not expand hobby beekeeping.

Last year, council's protection and community services committee voted in favour of reviewing the city's exotic animal bylaw to see if Winnipeg should allow urban beekeeping. Beekeeping is restricted under the exotic animal bylaw, which does not allow residents to keep animals such as venomous snakes, monkeys, sheep, horses or other species that could be a nuisance in the city.

Apiaries are not allowed in commercial or residential neighbourhoods, and bees can only be housed on urban areas zoned for agriculture, such as the University of Manitoba agricultural research field.

An administrative report cited several concerns about urban beekeeping, saying the bees may pose a threat to those with allergies, a beehive may diminish neighbouring property values, and hobby beekeepers will likely register for mosquito fogging buffer zones, which could be another concern for surrounding homeowners.

Council's protection and community services committee will review the report's recommendations at a meeting on Monday.

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