Global biodiversity is in rapid decline, yet the key threats to wildlife in many regions remain uncertain. Bats are one of the most diverse mammalian groups, playing vital roles in the ecosystems. There are at least 140 bat species in China, with 30 % of being regionally threatened or data deficient. Here, we used expert elicitation to assess the key threats and conservation strategies of bats in China. We designed an online questionnaire concerning the conservation of Chinese bats, and then distributed the questionnaire to bat experts worldwide via email. All participants were asked to rank each threat and conservation strategy according to the urgency and significance. After excluding participants without some knowledge of Chinese bats and conservation biology, we gathered the opinions of 119 bat experts from China and abroad. The results showed that the scores of different threats and conservation strategies were predicted by their categories. Loss of habitat, killing and hunting, and roost disturbance were regarded as the three top threats faced by Chinese bats. Most experts recognized that banning hunting and improving the legislation were two priority strategies for bat conservation, although monitoring of bat diversity, scientific publicity, and education were also important. Nearly 98 % of the experts supported the suggestion that threatened bats should be under special state protection because of their ecological services, economic value, population decline, scientific value, and other features. These results provide valuable implications for guiding the protection and management of bats in China.