I believe that cats are natural hunters and like with any predator sometimes there are bigger predators. That is why we are around!
The longest snake that Pete has caught was 2-3 ft. I didn't get out the tape measure! And he don't eat them, he just stuns them until I can finish them off or kills them and brings them to me. Yuck! But I always dispose of the nasty little vermin, so that there won't be any danger to my babies.
Peter is my hero and is worth his weight in gold (and that is considerable!). The kids were all over at my house one night and had been playing on the computer and generally just monkeying around in the dining room. Well, I got up the next morning for work but was sick and was going to go back to bed. Peter was scampering about under and around the computer desk like he was after a mouse. I sat down in the desk chair and looked around underneath but didn't see anything. Pete kept pawing at a box next to the desk. I told him that I would move the box but that he had better not run the thing up my leg. I flipped the box over and there was a small copperhead snake. Yikes!
I jumped up the chair, over the table, and went to get my ball bat. Pete had drug it out into the middle of the floor and had stunned it. And I finished it off. If he hadn't caught the thing and I hadn't stayed home from work, I shudder to image what would have happened when the kids had gotten up and started playing on computer. Needless to say, I had every crack and crevice that I could find sealed up tight after this.
As I tell everyone when they complain about Peter's bad attitude (he's a biter), Peter has earned his place in front of our fire! And the amazing thing is that he catches and/or kills snakes on a regular basis.
Snow, bless his little heart, had a thing for our now deceased fish, SunBlue. Snow didn't eat it but just continuously tramatized him. From the time that Snow discovered SunBlue, he would not leave him alone. Snow would push his 5 gallon tank off every surface that we put it. He pushed it off the dresser. He pushed it off the buffet. He pushed it off the bedside table. I came home from church one day to find SunBlue flopping in the kitchen floor. I rushed SunBlue to the bathroom and rehydrated him and he survived. But he was just never safe. He finally passed away, but I am afraid that his little life was shortened by Snow tormenting him. Snow can be a very determined kitty when he has something in his little mind.
Angel, one of our snuggle bug kitties, is mistress of the raccoons. We have been invaded by raccoons and possums this year due to the drought. There were five raccoons on the front porch in one night! Well, Angel doesn't take anyone messing with her food and she proceeded to womp the poor raccoon. It just humped up and covered his little head with his hands! She womped him so bad he finally ran away. Normally, raccoons can be extremely vicious. I don't know what made this encounter different.
Possums are an entirely different story. Nasty, mean animals they are. One bit poor Snow on the back leg and tail back during the spring when they first started coming up onto the back porch. Before we got Sassy (our dog that stays on the back porch), the stinking possums would invade every night. There were four at the same time one night. I used to keep feed out on the table at night for the yard cats(feral), but the possums and raccoons won't be dissuaded by any means. I have to feed mid morning and take the feed in before night.
I even had one raccoon that got wise to me feeding in the morning. She would come by about 7 am to chow down!