Downing Nov. 10th 1778
Unwilling to lose sight of my most pleasing and early studies; I have of late taken to natural history with my usual spirit. Permit me to trouble you for the account of the migration of the ring ouzel into the Isle of Wight & that you would also inform me that in case you examined the skin of the patagonian hare (now in Lever's Museum) whether it had a tail; & whether it had more than 3 toes behind. These remarks I could not well make on account of its situation. I suspect the genus.
The times are now so terrible that like the conjurer in Mevedo I beg to continue in my bottle; & that I mean to do till 1778. But my time shall not pass in idleness as you shall