Initial examination suggested the victim had been murdered within the past few days.
Two Forestry Commission workers raised the alarm after spotting bones among a pile of burned logs in Wentwood Forest, near Newport, in Gwent, on Saturday night. Police sealed off the area, in the middle of 2,500 acres of forest.
Detective Superintendent Ian Johnston, head of Gwent CID, leading the inquiry, said it was not yet known whether the victim was male or female, or their age group.
"We are checking on all missing persons in our area and have also informed other police forces around the country about the incident. It was certainly a fierce fire and someone had taken time to set up a considerable quantity of logs. We also believe other remains from the body may lie in close proximity."Reuse content