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Cause of bog fire near Aberystwyth still unknown

The cause of a peat bog fire in Borth, near Aberystwyth, is still unclear.

Fire crews were called to the blaze in the area at 5.20am.

According to Dr Christian Dunn from Bangor University peat burns well because it's made of rotting plants.

He added that it is unusual to see such a fire at this time of year.

Our reporter Kevin Ashford sent this report:

First fire of this size on Borth bogland for 20 years

The bogland is the most extensive lowland peat bog in Britain Credit: ITV News Wales

There has not been a fire of this size on the Borth peat bogland for 20 years, according to Natural Resources Wales.

The Borth bogland is regarded as one of the most extensive lowland peat bogs in Britain.

The vegetation is mostly made up of purple moor grass, called Molinia.

Natural Resources Wales said that although the outside of the grass may be wet, the inside could be dry.

"The Molinia has probably been set alight by sparks or flames from damaged power lines. Molinia fires are not uncommon in dry weather in autumn and winter and can be set off by a discarded match or cigarette.

"The peat will be saturated with water and we believe that the fire has moved quickly through the vegetation without burning the peat."

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Scientist: No way of knowing how bog blaze started yet

Fire crews were tackling the bog blaze earlier Credit: ITV Wales News

It is still unclear why a peat bog in Borth, near Aberystwyth, caught fire.

According to a scientist from Bangor University peat burns well because it's made of rotting plants.

He added that it is unusual to see such a fire at this time of year.

Dr Christian Dunn said: "It may be that the area of peatland has drainage channels cut into it and the strong winds have helped dry off the top layer.

"There’s no way of knowing at the moment though how it started, it could have even been from a lightning strike during the storms or perhaps the elusive will-o’-the-wisp."

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