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Beekeepers are thinking spring in Eden Prairie, with six residents applying for the city's new residential beekeeping permits.

Growing interest in honeybees prompted the city to approve a new ordinance last month allowing back-yard beekeeping, with one City Council member voting against it over concern it could harm some residents, especially those with bee allergies. Between then and Feb. 14, the city has received six permits — the amount staff estimated they'd get.

Other suburbs including Circle Pines, St. Paul Park and Stillwater also allow beekeeping as long as residents get a permit and follow certain regulations. Demand in those cities, too, has been moderate with about six or fewer permits issued.

St. Paul and Minneapolis also allow beekeeping while other cities don't have a specific ordinance on it or prohibit it.