A WARNING has been issued to the Forth Valley about an extreme risk of wildfire over the coming days.

A very high to extreme risk of wildfire is in place across Central, North-East and East Scotland until Saturday, April 17, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) has warned.

An extreme risk of wildfire is also in place across Western Scotland from April 15-17.

The SFRS has urged people who live within or who may enter rural environments to exercise caution.

The warning - released in conjunction with the Scottish Wildfire Forum (SWF) – remains in place until April 17.

Wildfires have the potential to burn for days and devastate vast areas of land and wildlife; and threaten the welfare of nearby communities.

Bruce Faquharson, local senior officer, said: "We are asking the public to exercise extreme caution and think twice before using anything involving a naked flame.

"Many rural and remote communities are hugely impacted by wildfires, which can cause significant damage.

"Livestock, farmland, wildlife, protected woodland and sites of special scientific interest can all be devastated by these fires - as can the lives of people living and working in rural communities.

"These fires can also have a hugely negative impact on the environment and the release of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere.

"Human behaviour can significantly lower the chance of a wildfire starting, so it is crucial that people act safely and responsibly in rural environments, and always follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code."

Visit firescotland.gov.uk/your-safety/wildfires.aspx for more information.