© 2017 American Physical Society. In this work we construct individual-based models that give rise to the generalized logistic model at the mean-field deterministic level and that allow us to interpret the parameters of these models in terms of individual interactions. We also study the effect of internal fluctuations on the long-time dynamics for the different models that have been widely used in the literature, such as the theta-logistic and Savageau models. In particular, we determine the conditions for population extinction and calculate the mean time to extinction. If the population does not become extinct, we obtain analytical expressions for the population abundance distribution. Our theoretical results are based on WKB theory and the probability generating function formalism and are verified by numerical simulations.