EGLIN AFB — Two wildfires, both apparently related to military activities, hit Eglin Air Force Base test ranges in Santa Rosa County on Thursday, according to base spokesman Mike Spaits.

In addition, smoke — apparently from a civilian burn authorized by the Florida Forest Service — moved across the main portion of Eglin and the surrounding community throughout Thursday, according to reports.

One of the wildfires, in Test Area A-77 west of State Road 87 and north of Holley, resulted from an Army 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) training mission, according to Spaits. The 7th Group headquarters is on Eglin land just south of Crestview.

That fire had been controlled by firefighters with Eglin's Wildland Support Branch by 7 a.m. Thursday after consuming 2.5 acres, according to Spaits. Because Test Area A-78 is a UXO location — a place where unexploded ordnance is in the ground — firefighters could not battle the blaze directly. Instead, they built a firebreak by clearing an area around the fire of vegetation and flammable materials to keep the blaze from spreading, Spaits said.

Firefighters faced a similar situation with a second Thursday wildfire in Eglin's Test Area A-78, also a UXO site, located northeast of Holley. It was not clear Thursday exactly how that blaze started, but Spaits speculated that it involved aircraft-based training by Air Force Special Operations Command airmen. AFSOC is headquartered at nearby Hurlburt Field, and is a heavy user of Eglin's test ranges, Spaits said.

As that fire continued into Thursday afternoon, Eglin's Wildland Support Branch spokeswoman Christina Mahmood warned that smoke from the wildfire "may impact Hurlburt Field and Highway 98 in the Florosa area." Firefighters were continuing to work that fire into Thursday evening, and no details of its extent was immediately available.

As efforts to control the Test Area A-78 fire were continuing Thursday afternoon, officials on the main portion of Eglin reported smoke "dispersing onto Eglin from fires to the north unrelated to the wildfire ... ." Officials with the North Okaloosa Fire District and the Crestview Fire Department said Thursday that they were not working any fires that could have sent smoke across the main part of Eglin.

Instead, it was possible that the smoke was coming from private burning of vegetation and debris authorized by the Florida Forest Service's Blackwater Forestry Center in Milton, according to Joe Zwierzchowski, the center's wildfire mitigation specialist.

"It is most likely from prescribed burning," Zwierzchowski said of the smoke reported drifting across Eglin. For Thursday, Zwierzchowski said the Blackwater Forestry Center had issued 17 authorizations for prescribed burning in Santa Rosa and Okaloosa counties, covering 2,149 acres. Authorizations also had been issued for 18 "pile burns" in the two counties, he said.

With winds coming out of the northwest Thursday, it's likely that the smoke wafting across Eglin came from the prescribed burning as well as the fire at the Eglin test range, Zwierzchowski said.