08/25/10 Death of Two Deers During Transport

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Veterinary inspection
Sjepan Cukulin
Trg Petra Zrinskog 9
10340 Vrbovec

August 25, 2010

Subject: Death of two deers during transport from Zagreb to Skopje

Dear Sir,

Based on numerous articles in the media and embittered reactions of individuals because of the deaths of two deers during their transport from Zagreb to Skopje, we report Berislav Jokic as head of the transport company Bero d.o.o. for violation of the Animal Protection Act and relevant rulebooks.

According to media information in the beginning of August the Zagreb and Split zoos hired the authorized transport company Bero d.o.o. from Sveti Ivan Zabno near Vrbovec (Antuna Gustava Matosa bb, 48214 Sveti Ivan Zabno; tel. 00385 48 271 111, 00385 98 249 444) which is in the ownership of Berislav Jokic, in order to transport six deers and two gnu antelopes to the Macedonian zoo in Skopje. Two deers died during transport from suffocation in overheated transport cases because of lack of air. The owner of the transport company Berislav Jokic confirmed that, saying in addition: "Animals die just like people. It is not the first time animals died during transport, it often happens."

Davorka Maljkovic, the director of the Zagreb Zoo as well as the director of the zoo in Skopje Dane Kuzmanovski denied responsibility for the death of the animals to the media, passing the responsibility to others, more precisely to the transporter - Berislav Jokic. Despite that, the Zagreb Zoo is a member of EAZA (European Organization of Zoos and Aquariums), while the Zoo in Skopje isn't a member of any professional association. The Animal Welfare Act and other regulations oblige authorized zoos with whom and under what conditions they should cooperate. That also includes checking the transport, means with whom zoo animals are sent to long-distance transport during the summer heat, as well as checking the adequacy of the trip aquipment. There also is a ban on animal transport if conditions for their safe transport are not met. Therefore, it is not crucial who pays for the transport.The Zagreb Zoo, with its yearlong experience of transport of animals to other zoos, had the responsibility to take on the concern and estimation of the conditions under which animals are sent to another country, a process which is very stressful for the animals, even without other inadequate transport conditions.

We filed a report to the District Attorney's Office regarding all this.

Seeing how Berislav Jokic, the responsible person for Bero d.o.o, declared how animals die during his transport on a regular basis, indicates that laws and regulations are repeteadly broken by transporting animals under inadequate conditions, which results in their suffering and painful death. It is clear from his statement that he does not see anything illegal or ethically questionable in this case, which is another reason why we think he should receive penalty. Determination of penalty for a willful failure to ensure the safe transport of animals, in this case should also have the educational purpose to stop Berislav Jokic from endangering the lives and health of animals transported by his company through irresponsible behavior in the future.

According to the mentioned, we ask you to make an immediate inspection of the transport company Bero d.o.o. and examine the circumstances under which two deers died during their transport from the Zagreb Zoo to the Skopje Zoo. We also ask you to determine the responsibility of people in charge at the Zagreb Zoo and possible omissions in their work and to file appropriate reports to the Magistrates Court.

Please notify us on the outcome of the procedure in written form so that we could inform the interested media and individuals about this matter.


Luka Oman


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