The two species in the genus Cheiromeles are commonly referred to as naked bats, hairless bats, or naked bulldog bats, as they are almost completely devoid of hair, except for very fine coats on the tail, head, and in a collar about the neck.

The skin is remarkably thickened, black in C. torquatus and dark brown in C. parvidens. The wings are joined together along the middle of the back near the midline, and the skin is strong and elastic. As well as the unusual throat sack, both of these species also possess a pocket along flank for securing the ends of the wings when folded; this allows for some degree of agility during quadrupedal locomotion.

Both species occur in Southeast Asia: C. torquatus from peninsular Malaysia to Borneo, and east as far as the Philippines, while C. parvidens is somewhat more restricted in range, found only on Sulawesi and the Philippines.

These are typical molossids with very strong, fast flight on narrow wings, hawking termites, grasshoppers, and moths over open paddy fields or forest canopies.

Mother bats unvaryingly produce twins, born in tree holes, the roosts favoured by both species.

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