Smilax vs English Ivy Berries for Birds

Q: I have a heavily wooded lot and have two tall trees that have some sort of vine growing on them. They have a shiny/waxed looking leaf, the fruit is blue berries that the robins absolutely love.

Every year in early February, birds come by the hundreds to pick off the berries. When I say hundreds, I do mean 1-300 at a time, in my estimation. It’s really a sight to see. I am just wondering what that vine might be.

A: My bet is that you have either a smilax or an English ivy vine.

Both bear dark berries that birds consume and spread far and wide.

For control, clip the vine close to the ground and paint the stump with glyphosate (click for sources).

smilax leaf

smilax berries

smilax berries

English ivy

English ivy berries