A leading animal rights charity has called for urgent Scottish Government action after it emerged lions and tigers are still confined in cages in Fraserburgh.
Jan Creamer, the president of Animal Defenders International, told STV she was shocked that nothing has been done to ease the creatures' plight.
Last November, SNP MSP Kevin Stewart tabled a motion in the Scottish Parliament, following the news that three lions and two tigers were spending the winter at the Circus High School animal training centre near Fraserburgh.
This came after respondents to an STV poll voted nearly 2-1 in favour of circuses being banned from using wild animals.
But, despite the fact the five cats will not be used in circuses this year, they face an indefinite period of being caged in Aberdeenshire.
Ms Creamer told STV: "Although these big cats will not have to endure a tour on the road this year, they will still be kept locked in cages on the back of a lorry.
"It is heartbreaking that whilst ADI is rescuing big cats from pitiful circus conditions in South America, these majestic animals are reduced to a pitiful existence here.
"Without a ban, these big cats and other wild animals face a desperate future.
"We urge the Scottish Government to publish swiftly the results of its public consultation.
"And we urge them to ban wild animals in circuses without delays."
STV contacted Mr Stewart, but we have so far received no response.
This prompted one of his political opponents, Labour MSP Lewis Macdonald, to claim the government was stalling on the issue.
He said: "SNP ministers said last year they would sort this out.
"But now winter has almost passed and nothing has changed.
"A bit like Dorothy's lion in The Wizard of Oz, they are all mouth and no action."