Cheirothrix lewisii has so far only been found in Cretaceous rocks of Lebanon, but another closely related but smaller species (C. libanicus) is also found in the same strata in Lebanon.

Other species of the same genus Cheirothrix are found in upper Campanian rocks in Germany, dated at about 84 million years ago.

Living flying fish inhabit tropical to warm temperate waters of the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific oceans.