When you drain the color from an image, it allows the eye to focus on form, textures, shapes, and composition. With wildlife photography, you can use monochrome to highlight the patterns of an animal’s fur or the textures of its skin, and to turn a distracting background into a neutral gray. Probably the biggest advantage of black-and-white is that it gives you a far greater leeway for exploring tonality. Viewers have certain expectations, for example, of how intense or what shade of yellow a lion should be. But in a monochrome image, you gain the freedom to choose to render the lion in high-key, or brooding dark, or anywhere in between, without making it appear as a grand departure from reality.