Cyhalothrin is a common environmental pollutant which poses increased risks to non-target organisms including human beings. This study reported for the first time a newly isolated strain, Bacillus thuringiensis ZS-19 completely degraded cyhalothrin in minimal medium within 72 h. The bacterium transformed cyhalothrin by cleavage of both the ester linkage and diaryl bond to yield six intermediate products. Moreover, a novel degradation pathway of cyhalothrin in strain ZS-19 was proposed on the basis of the identified metabolites. In addition to degradation of cyhalothrin, this strain was found to be capable of degrading 3-phenoxybenzoic acid, a common metabolite of pyrethroids. Furthermore, strain ZS-19 participated in efficient degradation of a wide range of pyrethroids including cyhalothrin, fenpropathrinn, deltamethrin, beta-cypermethrin, cyfluthrin and bifenthrin. Taken together, our results provide insights into the mechanism of cyhalothrin degradation and also highlight the promising potentials of B.thuringiensis ZS-19 in bioremediation of pyrethroid-contaminated environment. This is the first report of (i) degradation of cyhalothrin and other pyrethroids by B.thuringiensis, (ii) identification of 3-phenoxyphenyl acetonitrile and N-(2-isoproxy-phenyl)-4-phenoxy-benzamide as the metabolites in the degradation pathway of pyrethroids, and (iii) a pathway of degradation of cyhalothrin by cleavage of both the ester linkage and diaryl bond in a microorganism.