An air quality advisory is in effect for parts of southern and central Saskatchewan, including Regina and Saskatoon, due to smoke from forest fires in the province's north and Alberta.

Environment Canada issued the advisory shortly after 2 p.m. Thursday.

People may experience symptoms, such as increased coughing, throat irritation, headaches or shortness of breath, the weather agency said.

Children, seniors, and those with cardiovascular or lung disease, such as asthma, are especially at risk.

The smoke is expected to start lifting northward Thursday night, as southerly winds strengthen, and move out of southern Saskatchewan during the day Friday.