The Richmond River is one of the dominant rivers on the New South Wales north coast. It flows for 170 kilometres from the New South Wales/Queensland border and enters the sea at the township of Ballina.
The entrance to Richmond River estuary is trained using break walls and remains permanently open. It is classed as a barrier river. Wilsons River, which flows through the township of Lismore, is the main tributary into the Richmond River.
Richmond River is a focal point for local commerce, tourism and recreation. Despite its history of large-scale disturbance and development, this large estuary supports a diversity of seagrass, mangrove and saltmarsh communities, and provides important shorebird habitat.