Arecoline has biomedical importance, but it has untoward side effects on endocrine functions. The aim is to investigate its role on adrenal activity under thermal stress by ultrastructural and hormonal parameters in mice. Cold (4 °C) or heat (37 °C) stress, or arecoline (10 mg/kg body wt), each for 7 days in cold or heat stress stimulated adrenocortical activity ultrastructurally with an elevation of corticosterone level. Adrenomedullary activity was suppressed in cold stress with depletion of catecholamine levels. In heat stress, adrenomedullary activity was stimulated ultrastructurally with an elevation of catecholamine levels. Arecoline treatment alone, or in cold or heat stress suppressed adrenomedullary activity, judged by ultrastructural and hormonal parameters. Arecoline treatment caused hypoglycemia with an elevation of glycogen level, but cold or heat stress, or arecoline treatment in thermal stress caused hyperglycemia, with a fall in glycogen profile. Thus, arecoline in thermal stress plays a dual role on adrenal function and glucose-glycogen homeostasis in mice. © 2018, © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.