When I walk around on my survival single player world, I see flying fire textures very often and it's very annoying. It seems that the fire textures comes from torches, it looks indeed the same. I tried to take screenshots, but it didn't show up on the picture. These flying flame textures goes in a straight line in super speed, but very easy to see. They are even in dark caves.
Not really sure how to reproduce it, but I suggest just walking around (nearby torches) in 1.4.4 and you should see it pretty easy.