Mourad Gabriel

Gabriel Headshot - Mourad Gabriel

Areas of Expertise

  • One Health Investigations
  • Wildlife Ecology
  • Conservation Biology
  • Disease Ecology
  • Ecotoxicology
  • Molecular Ecology
  • One Medicine

Mourad has over 24 years of research experience investigating the threats to wildlife populations of conservation concern from both infectious and non-infectious disease agents. For over nine years, he has focused his research on the ecological interactions cannabis cultivation has with the Western United States natural resources on public lands. Many of his works fashioned the foundational knowledge of cannabis, its cultivation impacts and ecological interactions with natural resources on western public lands. He has been awarded the 2017 U.S. Forest Service Directors Award, the 2019, 2018, 2017 and 2015 Executive Office of the White House (Obama and Trump Administrations) High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area award for marijuana investigations and documentations, and was awarded the 2013 Conservationist of the Year award by The Wildlife Society.


J. David Wiens J.D., K. Dilione, C.A. Eagles-Smith, G.Herring, D.B. Lesmeister, M.W. Gabriel, G.M. Wengert, and D.C. Simon. Anticoagulant rodenticides in Strix owls indicate widespread exposure of west-coast forests. Journal of Biological Conservation 238:108238

Gabriel, M. W., L. V. Diller, J. P. Dumbacher, G. M. Wengert, J. M. Higley, R. H. Poppenga, and S. Mendia. 2018. Exposure to rodenticides in Northern Spotted and Barred Owls on remote forest lands in northwestern California: evidence of food web contamination. Avian Conservation and Ecology 13(1):2.

Franklin, A. B., P. C. Carlson; A. Rex; J. T. Rockweit; D. Garza; E. Culhane; S. F. Volker; R. J. Dusek;V. I. Shearn-Bochsler; M. W. Gabriel; K. E. Horak Grass is Not Always Greener: Rodenticide Exposure of a Threatened Species near Marijuana Growing Operations. BMC Research Notes

Wengert, G.M., M.W. Gabriel, J. M. Higley, and C. Thompson. Ecological Impacts across the Landscape: Trespass Marijuana Cultivation on Western Public Lands. In Marijuana: New Research and Frontiers. C. Miller editor, University Press of Kansas

Thompson, C., M.W. Gabriel, G.M. Wengert, and J. M. Higley. Effects of Illegal Marijuana Cultivation on Wildlife: Pesticide Exposure in a Native Carnivore and Consequences for the Species’ Survival. In Marijuana: New Research and Frontiers. C. Miller editor, University Press of Kansas

Higley, J.M., G.M. Wengert, D.M. Blake, and M.W. Gabriel, Marijuana Green Rush is Anything but Green: Report from the Hoopa Tribal Lands. In Marijuana: New Research and Frontiers. C. Miller editor, University Press of Kansas

Thompson C., M.W. Gabriel, and K. Purcell. The Ongoing Struggle against Marijuana Cultivation and Toxicant use in Western Forests, an Ever-changing Ecological Battlefield. The Wildlife Professional, 11 (3):42-46

Gabriel M.W., L. Woods, G.M.,Wengert, N. Stephenson,J.M. Higley, C.Thompson, S.M. Matthews, R.A. Sweitzer, K. Purcell, R.H.Barrett, and S.M.Keller,. Patterns of Natural and Human-Caused Mortality Factors of a Rare Forest Carnivore, the Fisher (Pekania pennanti) in California. PLoS ONE, 10(11), p.e0140640

Carah J., J.Howard, S.Thompson, A. Gianotti, S. Bauer, S.Carlson, D. Dralle, M.W. Gabriel, L. Hulette,B. Johnson, C. Knight, S. Kupferberg. High Time for Conservation: Adding the Environment to the Debate on Marijuana Liberalization. BioScience, 65(8), pp.822-829

Thompson, C., R. Sweitzer,, M.W. Gabriel, K. Purcell, R. Barrett, and R. Poppenga. Impacts of rodenticide and insecticide toxicants from marijuana cultivation sites on fisher survival rates in the Sierra National Forest, California. Conservation Letters. doi: 10.1111/conl.12038

Gabriel, M.W., G.M. Wengert, J.M. Higley, S. Krogen, W. Sargent, and D.L. Clifford. Silent Forests? Rodenticides on illegal marijuana crops harm wildlife. Wildlife Professional, 7 (1):46-50

Gabriel M. W., L. W. Woods, R. Poppenga, R. A. Sweitzer, C. Thompson, S. M Matthews, J Mark Higley, S. M. Keller, K. Purcell, R.H Barrett, G.M Wengert, B. N Sacks, and D.L Clifford.
Anticoagulant rodenticides on our public and community lands: spatial distribution of exposure and poisoning of a rare forest carnivore. PLoS ONE 7(7):e40163