Eden Prairie

ABOUT BIRCH ISLAND LAKE

Birch Island Lake, located just east of Purgatory Creek in Eden Prairie, is a shallow lake with vegetation that fills the lake’s bottom.

street map view of the Birch Island Lake area
Birch Island Lake, Eden Prairie

Water Quality

graph showing average phosphorous levels ranging from years 1989-2020
Phosphorous levels in Birch Island Lake have historically been lower than today’s measurements which are worse the the state standard.

Water quality of Birch Island Lake is poor, with average nutrient levels higher than state standards for shallow lakes. Latest data collection from 2020 observed that the lake is impaired. But, Birch Island Lake does have a diverse range of aquatic plants present in the lake. There are a total of 12 different plant species. Typically the plant community in the western two thirds of the lake is primarily comprised of cattails and other wetland vegetation. However, heavy rainfall during June of 2014 raised the water level in the lake by 6 feet, causing cattails to die off. In 2015, the invasive species purple loosestrife was recorded in aquatic plant cataloging.

Printable lake fact sheet

graph showing average chorophyll-a levels ranging from years 1989-2020
Most recent chlorophyll-a measurements have been worse than state standards.
graph showing average water clarity levels ranging from years 1989-2020
Most recent water clarity measurements have been worse than state standards.

Past Projects

Water levels of Birch Island Lake had declined by about seven feet since the mid-1980s. To bring Birch Island Lake back to a normal level, in 2008, the District installed a pipe to direct water from the area north of 62 into the lake. The Nine Mile Creek Watershed District also cleaned out and improved two existing stormwater basins and constructed a new stormwater pond to treat stormwater runoff prior to reaching Birch Island Lake to improve water quality. This project was part of the larger Eden Prairie Lakes Water Quality Improvement Project. Since installation of the tile system, water levels in Birch Island Lake have rebounded.

For information about other past District projects, click here

Recreation

icon of person hikingicon of picnic table

 

 

 

 

Nearby Birch Island Park has a hiking trail, picnic area, and playground. Birch Island Lake has canoe access.

Birch Island District Information and Walking Tour (PDF)

 

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources may have additional information on the lake (including fishing regulations; location; water access sites; lake maps; lake reports on stocking, ice in/out and water quality; fish consumption; and aquatic plant surveys) if so, that information can be found here:

https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/lakefind/index.html

Downloadable water quality data can be found here:

https://www.pca.state.mn.us/water/water-quality-data

diagram of ways to clean water—clean off boats for AIS, sweep up leaves and grass, pick up after pets, and plant native plants