SARASOTA, Fla. (WFLA) — Many Floridians know of the state and federal laws forbidding people from touching manatees and other marine animals, but Sarasota police issued a reminder for those who didn’t get the memo.

According to a post on the Sarasota Police Department Facebook page, officers spotted a group of manatees mating in the shallow waters off South Lido Beach on Sunday. They reported that, “quite a few folks were trying to touch them,” to which they said, “please don’t.”

(via Sarasota Police Department)

Disturbing a manatee can be dangerous to both you and the animal, and on top of that, you could get a huge fine or even jail time. Manatees are protected under the Endangered Species Act and under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, as well as the Florida Manatee Sanctuary Act. Anyone convicted of violating the law on the federal level is subject to a $50,000 fine and up to a year in prison.

Experts at the Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium said that if you see a manatee mating herd, observe respectfully from a distance. If you see a distressed, injured or deceased manatee in Sarasota or Manatee counties, you can call Mote’s 24/7 hotline at 888-345-2335.

The bottom line: You can look, but you can’t touch the salacious sea cows.