Cheiromeles is a genus of bats in the family Molossidae, the free-tailed bats. The genus was erected and described by Thomas Horsfield, who developed the name from the Greek word cheir ("hand"), a reference to the hand-like hindfoot, which has a toe that flexes like an opposable thumb. These bats have mostly hairless bodies and fold their wings into pouches of skin along their bodies when at rest. These are among the largest insectivorous bats, weighing up to 135 grams.
There are two species in this genus:
- Leong, T. M., et al. (2009). The naked bulldog bat, Cheiromeles torquatus in Singapore—past and present records, with highlights on its unique morphology (Microchiroptera: Molossidae). Nature in Singapore 2, 215-30.
- Reichard, J. D., et al. (2010). Thermal windows on Brazilian free-tailed bats facilitate thermoregulation during prolonged flight. Integrative and Comparative Biology 50(3) 358-70.
- Norberg, U. M. L. & Norberg, R. Å. (2012). Scaling of wingbeat frequency with body mass in bats and limits to maximum bat size. The Journal of Experimental Biology 215(5), 711-22.
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