Lake Richmond is a freshwater lake nestled in 77.86 hectares of bushland in an area undergoing rapid urban expansion. It is one of the largest freshwater lakes on the Swan Coastal Plain occurring in close proximity to the ocean. The reserve is an important habitat for two nationally listed threatened ecological communities, including thrombolites and sedgelands, as well as numerous waterbirds and other fauna. Lake Richmond forms part of the Rockingham Lakes Regional Park, an important ecological linkage that connects a series of reserves and regionally significant bushland (Bush Forever) across the City.
Situated in the suburb of Rockingham less than one kilometre away from the Indian Ocean, the 15 metre-deep freshwater lake is a marine relic which was once part of Cockburn Sound but the seaward advancement of the coastline forced it to be separated from the Sound around 4,000 years ago.
The park’s internationally significant thrombolites are a drawcard for sightseers from far and wide. A boardwalk at Lake Richmond allows visitors to view a critically endangered thrombolite community, which extends over three hectares. The dome-shaped thrombolites of Lake Richmond are built by microorganisms that resemble the earliest life on Earth—a factor which has helped scientists unravel the secrets of how life began on the planet. Some 350 million to 650 million years ago, such organisms were the only known life forms on Earth and the thrombolites and stromatolites they constructed dominated the clear, shallow seas of this period, forming extensive reef tracts rivalling those of modern coral reefs. Today these once dominant organisms are restricted to just a few places.
The Anne Mueller Environmental Walk provides an easy, 3km loop walk around the lake which is rich in bird life including the Australian pelican, black swan, Australian shelduck, musk duck, white-faced heron and common greenshank. A self-guided walk starts at the thrombolite boardwalk at the corner of Safety Bay Road and Lake Street.
Alternative access points are from Fisher Street, Richmond Avenue or Lake Street.
Lake Richmond is located adjacent to Cape Peron which has a coastal walk trail and viewing platforms over the ocean. Cape Peron has car parking and boat launching facilities.
Lake Richmond, Rockingham