Beelzebub's tube-nosed bat (Murina beelzebub) , also Beelzebub bat or demon bat, is a species in the vesper bat family Vespertilionidae, found in the Greater Mekong region of Southeast Asia, specifically the Quảng Trị and Gia Lai provinces of Vietnam. They have tube-shaped nostrils (hence the name) which assist them with their feeding.
The Beelzebub bat is one of 126 new species found in the Greater Mekong region during 2011. There were two other tube-nosed bats found in Southeast Asia in 2011: Ashy-gray tube-nosed bat (Murina cineracea) and Walston's tube-nosed bat (Murina walstoni). All three species are small for bats and M. beelzebub is medium-sized for a Murina bat. These three new tube-nosed bats were discovered by a team from the Hungarian Natural History Museum (HNHM) and Fauna and Flora International (FFI). All three of these bats live in tropical forests, making them endangered by deforestation.
It was named "Beelzebub" and "demon" because of its coloration and fierce behavior, alluding the use of the term "Beelzebub" as reference to the underworld in Christian texts. This bat is small enough to fit in a person's hand, weighing 5.3 and 6.0 grams (0.19 and 0.21 oz). Its color pattern is unique for the regional habitat: a white underbelly, black head, and dark back. It lacks the golden guard hairs so common in other members of the genus Murina. Its behavior tends to "flight" before "fight" and it is also quite shy, avoiding human contact. However, if captured they can be very fierce. As of 2013, there are still few details known about them and their ecology and it is suspected there are many more species of bats yet to be discovered in the region.
Vespertilionid bats have many cryptic species. Eight new species were found in Southeast Asia between 2005-2009. The use of DNA technology has proved very useful in differentiating between the various species of Murina.