I am thinking of trying the berried shrub Winterberry (Ilex...) near my driveway so I can appreciate it during the winter. However, what will deer do with it? Will they strip the berries completely or just eat some?
I don't have any experience with Winterberry shrubs but I do have deer issues. I can tell you that if they like this shrub, they will not just be picking the berries off. They will mow them down to the ground. Birds will pick off the berries. Deer will eat the entire thing.
Around here, yews get eaten, but the winterberry shrubs don't. We have lots of deer, but not really bad feeding pressure since there are also lots of other plants. As tree oracle mentioned, the birds like the berries. Depending on what other food sources are available, how deep the snow is and which cultivar you plant, the berries disappear around as early as December or as late as maybe February.
Winterberrys in my yard are stripped of red berries every fall by large flocks of migrating birds...usually robins.
The deer here aren't interested in these shrubs.